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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  December 10, 2012 8:30am-12:00pm EST

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log on to our web site at click the series tab and select "the communicators." you can also see orr regularly-scheduled programs at this series link., your online resource for public affairs programming. coming up, two view on deficit reduction and averting the so-called fiscal cliff by white house economic adviser gene sperling and republican senator rob portman. then we're live with a discussion on the latino vote in the 2012 presidential election and the prospects for changes to immigration policy. and later the senate's back at 2 p.m. eastern for general speeches. later, members resume debate on extending the transaction account guarantee or t.a.g. program that provides unlimited deposit insurance cover coverage a procedural vote on that
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measure is expected along with a vote on president obama's nominee to be the assistant secretary of housing and urban development. live gavel-to-gavel coverage here on c-span2. >> today the pew center ohses a daylong conference on voters' experiences in the 2012 election. representatives from google, facebook, microsoft and twitter as well as democratic and gop secretaries of state will discuss voter registration and id laws and the long lines that occurred outside some voting precincts. live coverage of the conference begins at 9 a.m. eastern over on c-span3. >> now, white house economic adviser gene sperling and ohio republican senator rob portman give their thoughts on deficit reduction and averting the so-called fiscal cliff. they recently spoke at an event hosted by the group campaign to fix the debt.
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first, you'll hear from senator portman whose remarks were interrupted by protesters calling for the protection of social security and medicare deficit reduction negotiations. this is about a half an hour. [inaudible conversations] >> morning. thank you all for joining us this morning. i'm maya macguineas, i am working with the campaign to fix the debt, and i'm the president for the committee for a responsible federal budget, and i'm really excited to join a phenomenal panel that we have with us today to help the campaign fix the debt which is, um, a large, nonpartisan coalition that is focused on helping members of congress come together to put in place a comprehensive debt deal. so i'm very delighted that today what we have is a diverse and very experienced, um, group of panelists to talk about two
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major topics; tax reform and health care reform. all in the context of how are we going to work together to put in place a plan that would be able to tackle the nation's fiscal challenges. we will hear numerous different opinions, we will hear plenty of disagreement, and i hope we'll hear a lot of ideas about how to generate different, um, useful reforms to the budget that can help get a big deal put in place. and none of us should forget that what's going on in the political system is incredibly challenging, and members of both parties are working very hard to come up with a compromise deal that will be able to address these challenges and that will are reflect sort of the priorities of both parties. so we want to make sure different opinions are reflected here, and we also want to make sure the whole discussion is focused on how we can work together to come up with a compromise which is really at the core of what the campaign to fix the debt is focused on. so we are really lucky to have the kickoff speaker be senator rob portman, senator from ohio,
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a very experienced budget expert in both budget policy and tax policy. he sits on the senate budget committee, and he's also been the head of the office of management and budget, so i'm going to turn the microphone over to senator portman. [applause] >> maya, thank you very much. >> i just want you to know that what you and your cronies are trying to do to social security is -- [inaudible] we do not want our social security privatized, we want -- [inaudible] >> thank you very much. [laughter] and thank you, maya, for inviting me. and it's great to be here with a lot of distinguished budgeteers behind me, tax form experts -- >> [inaudible] more jobs from -- >> i mean, that's great. thank you all for being here.
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maya, i have to talk about her for a second. i've been working with maya for many years. you know, let me finish my comments, and then why don't we do this. if you want to meet afterwards, i'm happy to meet with you. shall we do that? because i want to be sure -- i've only got 5-8 minutes, i'm told, and right after my talk, okay? are you available? good. all right. let's meet, let's meet right back there so that we aren't taking the time away from all these folks behind me who are true experts we need to hear from on tax reform and health care reform. but thank you, maya, for inviting me here and for being the paul revere out there for years on deficit reduction. [inaudible conversations] >> thank you. anybody else before we get started? [laughter]
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>> my name is dick oscar, i'm a small business owner from washington state, and this campaign does not have our best interests at heart. we need to fix the economy before the debt, you know, because i need customers. i don't need corporate -- [inaudible] trying to steal my medicare money. >> all right. i look forward to visiting afterwards for all of our ohio constituents who are here. where was i? so, thank you. but i do appreciate the opportunity to talk for a moment about tax reform -- >> senator portman, i'd like to make it clear that senior citizens are not -- [inaudible] we cannot -- [inaudible] >> um, as you can see, there's a lot of strong opinions on how we deal with our record deficits and debts, but i think everybody here and certainly the folks i
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talk to back home agree we have to. and these decisions won't be easy. as maya said, the political process is such that it's controversial, and we're going to hear plenty of opinions, it sounds like, from our panelists just as we have from the audience. >> i want to know what you're going to do to make sure the middle class -- >> let him speak! >> boo! >> middle class -- >> let him speak! >> -- gets a fair deal. >> let her speak. >> that's right. [inaudible conversations] >> would you like to speak? [laughter] gene sperling is now here. gene and i talked last night. there was a holiday can party last night at the white house. at one point i found myself between -- i found myself between john boehner and tim geithner. i quickly backed up. [laughter] but it wasn't up to me to talk to a lot of colleagues on the house side and the senate side,
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gene and others. i told gene what i was going to say, and then i realized after the fact that i have no idea what he's going to say. so he did a good job finding out what i'm going to say. so i look forward to hearing his comments. >> many i came all the way from the other washington to let you all know my great grandfather died fighting for social security, and i'm not about to let the 2% take away these hard-won benefits from my generation. i'm here for my mom who's a public schoolteacher who spent the better part of 40 years educating our children. she deserves and needs to e retire next year. she's 64. i'm here for darlene, a -- [inaudible] native who receives her life saving blood pressure medication through medicare part d. i'm here for alice, an african-american grandmother of ten who receives treatment for her diabetes through medicaid. this woman worked her whole life in the hotel industry. i'm here for my friend mark who
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owns a small business. he's a construction manager. >> ma'am, ma'am, i'm going to ask you to sit down so we can have this discussion. >> i'm happy to leave -- [inaudible] >> out! [inaudible conversations] >> out! [inaudible conversations] >> we're gonna vote -- [inaudible] the economy! we're gonna vote, not float the economy! we're gonna vote, not float the economy!
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we're gonna vote, not float the economy! >> okay. i'm gonna take a moment to try to, um, talk, and we'll see if it works. i don't know if other people are here. but i actually think that what we just saw is, um, a true reflection of how hard what we're trying to do is. i'm really disappointed that when we're trying to create a forum to have discussions, um, we can't have everybody stay like they were invited to come and actually have this real discussion. was there are realish -- because there are real issues about how we're going to try to fix these problems on revenues, on social security, on medicare, on spending, on defense. and there are going to be different opinions about how we do it. and the truth is, there are going to be really hard choices, and people are not going to be able to all, um, have everything they want as we work as a country to try to dig ourselves out of a fiscal hole. so i'm actually not at all surprised, um, that people are
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concerned and worried about the choices as we're just trying to figure them out, but i am disappointed that when people are come anything good faith to try to have a real policy discussion about how to do it, that we're not able to. so that, i think, is going to be the kinds of challenges we have as we try to do what the campaign is doing, which is create a big table where we can have that discussion. i think senator portman was incredibly generous to say he looks forward to meeting with his constituents, and i would now like to invite him -- if you're willing to, senator -- to come up and can talk about some of the policies you wanted to talk about. [applause] >> actually, they just ghei my speech -- gave my speech. i'd like to grow, not slow the economy. [laughter] that is part of the answer to this. we may disagree on how we do it, but we're not going to be able to get the fiscal house in order without having additional revenue, and that comes from growth. we also need to restrain spending. we need to do both because we,
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in washington there's such a deep fiscal hole now that we can't climb out of it without both. so, again, we're going to have differences of opinion on how to do it. as we saw here today, there's strong views on both sides and all sides, but that's why we need this discussion today and why we need to have a successful outcome not just to these fiscal cliff talks, but also to this longer-term issue of debt and deficit and economic growth. i was asked today to focus a little bit on what might be possible in terms of tax reform. i know tax reform and health care reform are the two topics we're discussing this morning and, again, i look forward to hearing from gene and also this distinguished panel behind us. with regard to the tax and health care reform issues, i'll make a simple point which is that if we go through this fiscal cliff discussion and do not take advantage of that opportunity to put in place reforms to the entitlement programs which are incredibly
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important but also up sustainable, and if we do not take advantage of it to look at our tax system which is antiquated, outdated, inefficient, we will have swappedderred the opportunity to really -- squanders the opportunity to address the long-term problem. we'll be right back on the cliff again. so the first fiscal cliff is approaching, we have to address it. if we do not, we'll see about $500 billion in tax increases, we'll see huge across the board arbitrary cuts including about 55 billion in defense which the congressional budget office, the federal reserve and others have looked at when they look at the entirety of the fiscal cliff, and they have determined that this could drive the economy into negative for story, meaning back into a recession. that's the last thing we want to see. along the lines of growth, we need to be sure that we're not doing something here short term that puts the economy back in a position where we're not generating the kind of revenue because of the lack of growth to be able to deal with these issues and to be able to get these unemployment numbers down.
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in my view, this recovery is not your father's recovery, it's different in kind. it's different than any recovery we've had in this country. if you look at even the recovery in 2001 to 2003, that time period, recall we called it then the jobless recovery. and yet by this time in that recovery we'd already brought back 2.6 million jobs. so at this point after the recession began, 2.6 million jobs had returned. and that was considered jobless. if you look back at the recovery after the 1980 and '81 recession which was a recession that was also deep, in fact, unemployment was higher than it was in the most recent recession, we were up 7.2 million jobs at this point. and, unfortunately, today we find ourselves still about 4.2 million jobs short. so it's different. it's different in kind, and i think unless we focus on the growth side of the equation in
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addition to restraining spend, we're not going to see the kind of robust recovery we all hope for, with that comes additional revenue, of course, and the ability for us to deal with this deep fiscal hole. so i think that it's not a textbook, slickly call -- cyclical down turn in recovery in part because america's infrastructures are not keeping up. .. we have high rates.
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it's because really since 1986, america sat on the sidelines. so while we have, since 1986, done nothing to reform our tax code, every single one of our oecd partners, all of the other developed countries have. all of them have. they haven't just reduce their rates which is something that is sort of the marquee that people look at. candidate, gone on its better rate from 1625 to 15%. they were at 35 as you know. they reform their structure and more fundamental ways. in ways that make them more competitive. that has led, my view, to move capital and people and investment, and headquarters. and it will continue to unless we deal with it. so it's an opportunity during the fiscal cliff discussion, not just as i how do we get more revenue but how do we do it
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three system that will help to create economic growth rather than adding an additional layer on top of our outdated antiquated and efficient tax system, we have the opportunity here to actually provide the necessary incentive to get the tax code to a point where it does create growth. as compared to our global competitors, and where we are able to see, therefore, an improvement in our fiscal condition. and so when people talk about what's going to happen here in the short term, the next few weeks, no, we are not going to enact tax reform, nor should we. it's way too complicated. but there's been a lot of good work done. it's been done by the finance committee, done by simpson-bowles and some of the folks behind me. it's been done by alice rivlin and pete domenici and others who are here. and, frankly, we have a pretty good sense of where we opt ago. i think there's a building consensus about broadening the base. and i think if we do that and do it in a smart way we could now
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make a commitment to the additional revenue that would come from tax reform and have a lot more possibility of a bipartisan outcome. because as you know, republicans including myself have said more revenue on the table needs to come from a couple of things. won his reductions in spending come and that's again important but unsustainable entitlement programs. a second pro-growth tax reform. on the supercommittee where i served, turned out to be not too super, we talked a lot about that. we actually had a lot of bipartisan agreement on that fact as we got into the details, it became harder. there are reasons it wasn't successful in the context which i think of nothing to do with the issue of tax reform. by to think out of the process we developed an understanding among some of us in the senate and house as to how we could get there, and certainly the two committees, ways and means committee, max baucus and dave
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camp, when you hear them talk about tax reform he will hear some very similar things. so i would hope that in this process we don't squander this opportunity to deal with the important issue of actually reforming unsustainable important but drivers of our long-term debt which is the entitlement side, but also make sure we do deal with the critical issue of making sure that we have pro-growth tax reform as part of the package. and again, i believe that there is enough consensus now and enough common ground for us to put this together in the short term. we could do it in six months. which may seem like an awfully long time. most americans who lived in washington wonder why we don't do things more quickly. but as we've seen here this morning and as we will see as these hearings unfold in a more serious way, there will be a lot of disagreement, how you do it. on the other hand, a lot of great work has been done. 1986 model, by the way, i think is constructive in a lot of
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ways. one of which is to ensure that congress and the administration can work together by not drawing lines in the sand. and gene sperling and i may disagree some of the specifics but i think we can agree on a lot of the principles, and that's where you start discussion. and i do believe that this administration, having spoke about tax reform a number of times, the president himself in the city and has talked about it. along the lines would've talked about today. could work with republicans and democrats in congress to get that done. so again i appreciate what folks have done already in the panel behind me. many of them, at some risk, put out their ideas of where we opt ago. i plan to take a little more time this morning, but the time is put in a little bit. i'm going to come at this point, take it back to maya and look forward to hearing from gene and hearing from gene anthem so my constituents on some of the
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tough issues we will face as we move forward on this incredibly important short-term project. keep from going over the cliff which we must avoid, but also in the process of doing that, established the framework, two things i think have to be part of it, entitlement reform and tax reform. thank you all. [applause] >> thank you so much, senator. next we're going to hear from gene sperling who's the head of the national economic council of the white house. obvious enemies of a lot of discussions that are going on right now, and we will talk about tax or the big broad budget situation which we are. gene, thank you so much for joining us. [applause] >> well, thank you, maya, for your long-term leadership on the issue of reaching bipartisan fiscal discipline. we certainly have just seen that there is no shortage of passion
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on this issue. and it is a reminder that for all of the metrics we will discuss today that go into this or that as a percentage of gdp, the ultimate metric, ultimate end, the ultimate test for everything we do in economic policy is whether it meets the fundamental values that make this country great, which are, are we a nation which the action of your birth does not overly determined the outcome of your life where everyone has an opportunity to rise, are we a nation with economic growth strengthens the middle class and creates a more room for the poor and others who want to work their way up? and, three, are we creating an economy where those who work hard and take responsibility can raise their children with dignity, work with dignity, retire with dignity?
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that's the ultimate test, the ultimate -- the ultimate of what we'll do. i believe there is no reason we should not be able to find common ground for a balanced, fair and pro-jobs and pro-growth budget agreement. no one on any side should ever aspire to go over the cliff or in any other way to do harm to our economy as a budget tactic or political strategy. those of us in petitions have responsibility, have an obligation to work together to find common ground, or at least painful but acceptable compromise that moves our nation forward. if we can pass a balanced agreement the president has advocated, we can beat the low expectations that exist for us that provide a spark of confidence to growth, investment and jobs. that type of agreement means balance between high income
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revenues and mandatory spending. balance in terms of protecting the poor and the vulnerable, strengthening the middle class, and asking the most from those who can contribute the most. and balance in terms of finding the fiscal sweet spot where we both create long-term confidence from showing we are bringing them in stabilizing our debt as a percentage of our economy, but also by including measures like infrastructure, and emergency unemployment insurance to ensure we are giving the economy and our families the strength and momentum they need in the immediate term. all of those are an important component of balance, and i am happy that so many of the fiscal commissions, and even i heard the reference in senator portman, understand that a strong agreement has to make sure that we strengthen the
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recovery, not overly contract the recovery in the short term. we don't need to do that. we can design and intelligent long-term deficit reduction package that gives momentum and strength to jobs in the immediate term as we create more confidence -- confidence that will get our debt and deficit under control and the long-term. now, make no mistake about it. no budget agreement, however robust, will provide economic certainty and confidence we aspire to. is a job careers, investors and working families belief that after we reach that agreement, just months down the road we will start the next round of debt limit debacles. as both economists and business leaders have told us, only the greatest national tragedies have competed with the debt limit the bottle of 2011 in terms of damaging consumer confidence. so, let's be clear. if we want to see the economic
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benefit of a bipartisan budget agreement, we need to agree that the era of threatening the default of the united states as a budget tactic is over. the full faith and credit of the united states of america is something we should cherish, and never use as a bargaining tool by any side. they should be beyond question at this moment. second point i want to make is that contrary to the claims of some, president obama has put forward specific and detailed mandatory savings on the table, and is deeply committed to leading on passing a balanced plan that includes tough but smart entitlement reform. those of you, and the many of you who are budget experts, will back me up on the following. it is only the president's budget, not the house republican budget, that have specific detail in savings in the first seniors on medicare.
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those measures include not only provider savings designed to increase value for health services, but increases on high income premiums in medicare and increases, and medigap reform for new beneficiaries that is designed to discourage excess utilization. and i could go on and on. the president have specific proposals on indirect payment for farmers, federal workforce retirement savings among many others. we understand that others, including people on these panels, will have other ideas, but so far we're still waiting to hear a clear and detailed definition of how those who disagree with us would propose to do things differently. third, it is important that all those who care about our country reaching a balanced and robust deficit reduction agreement understand that it can not come together without rates going up on income over 250,000.
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as my colleague, jason furman, and i recently wrote, while the headline number that could technically be reached through simply limiting deduction on high income workers might seem in the ballpark, such estimates quickly fall apart with the most minimal scrutiny. to take one proposal, the one to limit deductions to $25,000, it is often described as raising over $1 trillion. yet that estimate relies on tax increases on 17 million taxpayers making under 250,000. if you remove attacks on those middle-class families and have a proper phase-in, which we would all agree you should, the savings number comes down to as most 700 billion. but even at this point there is a fundamental flaw, because the $25,000 deduction cap means that the charitable deduction for all i income people will essentially
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be a lemonade. it is hard to design a better way to unite the most well-off americans and those representing the poorest americans, nonprofit, churches, universities and hospitals against a single idea than proposing to completely eliminate the charitable deduction. you then decide if you make an exception for charitable deductions, you're savings go down to anywhere from 350 billion, to $450 billion. what does that mean? that means if the president were to take the position that rates could not go up, and he then found that so-called high income deduction savings max out at around 400 billion, then to get a robust and balanced deficit agreement, the president would have to be willing to agree to over 1 trillion revenues for taxes that fall most it on the middle class, something he will
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definitively will not do. even worse, such a plan would be asking these middle-class americans to face higher taxes simply to afford lower taxes on the most well-off. that is why the president has made clear he cannot sign, and will not sign, any bill that does not raise the rates for ones that seek to extend the bush income tax cuts at their current levels. of course, tax reform on high income deductions should be part of the package. the president himself has in his budget proposal for more than one year a 28% deduction, cap on tax expenditure for high income americans. so the president has not only shown willingness to support that type of reform on tax expenditure reductions, he has led on the issue input forward a
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specific and detailed proposal to raise over 500 billion as any as i have seen. that is why the letter that came to the president from the house republican leadership yesterday was so disappointing. it not only failed to recognize the necessity of raising rates, it actually call for lowering rates for the highest earners. which inevitably means a worse deal for the middle class. this is very unfortunate, because recognition that we must raise rates on the highest income americans stands today as the critical key to unlocking the door to a bipartisan budget agreement. the letter also was disappointed because it failed to acknowledge what virtually every business leader today recognizes. that we must for the sake of economic confidence and certainty and the self-inflicted economic wound of sporadic --
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that threatens default and tarnish full faith and credit of the united states. again, there is for us to approach no less go over the cliff. if our colleagues on the other side of the aisle will work in good faith with us, i am confident that we can reach a balanced, fair, pro-growth and pro-job agreement in the spirit of good faith and compromise. thank you, and i'm sure everyone is looking forward to the discussion from the very impressive group of experts, treachery, that you gather today, so thank you. [applause] >> later today you can see a discussion on how u.s. debt slow economic growth and the retirement of baby boomers could lead to a new phase of political and economic development. event is hosted by the american enterprise institute in washington. you can see it live, 5:30 p.m. eastern over on c-span.
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>> i think people still love discovery. just the channel to the ability find surprises. every month or every year i giggle a little bit about some show that people are suddenly talking about that a don't think you could have ever imagined. if you come to me and say mike, i want you to choose honey boo boo, or the show with the duck guy, or certain food channel network, i don't think that if i had to predetermined that was my practicum i would've ever picked that. but the ability to stumble on them or to hear people talking about them, let me do it into an environment and can go paddling kind of go paddling around in there, so defined, i kind of like honey boo boo and on watching it, i still think that's a huge part of the american television experience. and i think it gets sold short we get the techno- ecstatic
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dogma anytime, anywhere, now. i do still think a lot of american love the enjoyment of escape and be able to kind of roam around the tv channel finding things they didn't know were there. >> michael powell on the future of television, tonight eight eastern on "the communicators," on c-span2. >> we are live this morning at the woodrow wilson center here in washington where immigrationworks u.s.a. is hosting a forum on the impact of the latino vote 2012 presidential race. panelists will analyze the outcome of november's election and whether it will impact immigration policy. among the speakers today, a member of president obama's presidential campaign, dan restrepo, and "washington times" political editor, stephen finan. this is live coverage on c-span2.
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>> [inaudible conversations] >> [inaudible conversations]
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>> [inaudible conversations] >> [inaudible conversations]
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>> [inaudible conversations] >> [inaudible conversations]
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>> [inaudible conversations] >> once again we are live on c-span2 at the immigrationworks u.s.a. at the woodrow wilson center for a forum hosted by immigrationworks u.s.a., look at the impact of the latino vote on the 2012 presidential race. we do expect it to get started in just a moment here. also starting live on the companion network c-span3, the pew center is hosting a daylong caucus on the voter experience
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of 2012. featuring representatives from google, facebook, microsoft and twitter. republican and democratic secretaries of state are also part of that discussion. that has just gotten underway life on our companion network c-span3. also coming up today the center for american progress is hosting a conference. this white house national economic council gene sperling and others are taking part on how education and innovation can benefit the u.s. economy. that's expected to start at 10 a.m. eastern live on our companion network c-span. >> [inaudible conversations]
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>> [inaudible conversations] >> [inaudible conversations]
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>> [inaudible conversations] >> [inaudible] this is i think as you all know a place where public policy and research needs, the world of ideas with the world of policy action. very happy to see the director of our program here this morning. also want to acknowledge -- and,
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of course, very pleased that this is an event we're cosponsoring with immigrationworks which really did most of the organization for this. tamar jacoby from you here for a minute, ma but that is to have to get us was very proud to cosponsor the arizona state university. with everyone relationship with arizona state university. once again on a number of issues as immigration what did i want to acknowledge, a senior scholar at the woodrow wilson center, former governor and distinguished colleague, and many other good friends here. good to see dan and roberto and many others back of the woodrow wilson center. dan is now out of government and into his civilian life. there's no doubt the latino vote was important in the past election. we started to put this together did know how important it would be. it was an event planned ahead of the election itself. and we started with a question
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mark, decided to leave the question mark on their own because there are of course many people that claim that election outcomes were the results of different factors. but i don't think there's any doubt for anyone who watched endless hours of talk tv and talk radio the days after the election, like me, knows there was probably no -- than the latino vote. for many of us who follow these issues, some like roberto, with great expertise, others like me with much more generality, for the past couple decades, we've been saying for a long time the latino vote is really going to matter in a national election. it's going to be the year the latino vote really comes home. i think after a while we stop believing it for the most part but we kind of figured someday it will be a decisive factor but i think you could make a plausible argument and i think our panel will today that this election it really was a decisive factor. it was one of the decisive factor.
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there's a number of things we did ask. first of all how much of a decisive factor was it compare to other things? how much did it matter, not just for the presidential race but congressional race and many state races as well. why was it such a decisive factor? why now and not other times that many of us have predicted it. how much was immigration policy and factor in this? there's a tendency to conflate the immigration vote. i wanted from the panelists that is a grave error. these are different things come immigration policy has a different set of constituencies far beyond latino voters and latino voters care of a lot of outlaw things beyond immigration policy but there is some relationship to what extent it immigration policy play into this, and our their ethics on immigration policy going forward? but also there are ways that candidates approach issues that may affect the way -- i think that's a key question beyond this -- specific policy, he drove the latino vote in a lot of the general media. there may be much more indirect
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coalition, how parties talk about immigrants overall and latinas for the most part at this point have closer ties to an immigrant, within families and other groups, u.s. aside and so how -- how it may be decisive. let me throw one more thing, which is there was a great commentary and i wish i could remember who the author was the day after the election, a republican analyst who said the republican party did really well on latino leaders but not on latino followers. and if you look at it, the two governors were latino in this country, two of the three senators who are latino are republicans. republicans have not done so bad recruiting latino politician. we could not have said that 10 years ago. they were on the way. republicans caught up on this and certainly catching up relative to the support have gotten with latinos.
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so is there a difference between latino leaders and latino supporters? does this look for to the fact that the republican part is maybe getting ahead of the game and will do better in the future? or are we look at the fact where republicans have made us in roads and are still unable to attract the latino vote. and the congress for democrats. are democrats in a position to go comfortable that what they have done is secure a strong basis of latino voters and they can count on a? or should democrats be worried with some of these voters? i think these are things you hear different perspectives. now that i've made time for some of you to arrive, let me turn it over to the real post here, and before i do that, let me acknowledge those of you who came in after me. good to see all of you. tamar jacoby, president of immigrationworks. >> thank you for coming and thank you for being on time. i'm tamar jacoby, president of immigrationworks u.s.a.
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a national federation of employees, mostly small business owners were to provide immigration law. we are on the advocacy side of this but we're not wearing our advocacy hat today. very pleased to be cosponsoring the event with the woodrow wilson center and arizona state university. thank you, andrew. thank you, director of latin american program here at woodrow wilson. out allies at asu who are not here, we're very grateful to general counsel josé, and vice president jim o'brien to make this happen on the asu end, and very grateful -- grateful to my team did a good job of bringing this together. so i think andrew frame the issue very nicely for us. we don't need too much more of that. the frame that really says it all, in my view, is 71-27. 71% to 27% presidential vote margin, and it's not just incredibly lopsided presidential vote march. is presidential vote margin in
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the nation's fastest-growing voting bloc. a voting block by one estimate might lead to double in size over the next 20 years. you heard me right. double in size by 2030. so anybody who didn't realize, a lot of republicans out there, but anybody who didn't realize the latino vote was important between, before november 6, probably knows by now. although i think it's true as andrew said many of us who knew it was going to be important didn't really know how important and how significant and how stunning in effect it would be, no matter what the numbers were, how we would make an impression on the public as a political class. certainly when we planned this event, as andrew said, we did not know, we had no idea how much attention the issue would get on the days after the election. and i think we thought that would come on kind of a blank
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slate, talk about how many people voted, important going forward. our job is a little harder now because you've all read those stories. but in a way that gives this room and our panelists room to take a little deeper, to look into the future, you think about significance and to talk about some choices that lie ahead that we might not have done if the issue had not gotten so much attention in the last couple of weeks. so the morning is divided into two sessions. the first is a conversation about arizona, narrowly focused on arizona, what exactly happened in arizona. and that means a little bit of an explanation or a disclaimer. arizona was a little bit of an anomaly is time to latinos made up 18% of the people who voted in arizona, so one of the states with the biggest latino vote, but obama didn't carry the state. in fact, romney won big.
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the latino democratic senate candidate, richard carmona, didn't win. and sheriff joe arpaio, scourge of immigrants, legal and illegal, did win reelection comfortably. so not exactly what you would expect, big latino vote but it didn't translate into results. still, we think there's a lot that's interesting to be said about arizona, and i won't steal the fire of the people who are going to say it. we were looking at in particular because the asu connection, but there's a lot to learn. it's a very interesting microcosm. so the first panel is about arizona. with that kind of just be aware of that disclaimer. we're not certain taking arizona is typical. the second section, second session will zoom out, pull back from arizona and look at the big picture, the scope and significance of the latino vote nationally. and i'll say more about that when the time comes. but for now, i want to thank you
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all for being here, and let's get going. i'm going to hand the stage over to stephen dinan who is the politics editor of the "washington times," who is going to conduct a conversation about arizona with 9/11, he was an associate professor in the school of politics at asu. so thank you, stephen. take it away. >> so, professor, good to have you. i'm politics editor at the "washington times." i agree with what tamar jacinta actually i think you can learn a lot about the national stage, immigration conversation, and the latino voter in particular from what went on in arizona, particularly it explores the limits, it tests the limits of what we can learn about latino
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voters and their affect goes on electoral politics and foreign policy. so i guess i would like to start with just sort of a basic question. if somebody would ask what the white voter is, i would have no clue how to actually answer that question. so let's start with a very tough one, which is what is the latino voter, or what is a latino voter? in particular ways the latino voter in arizona? who is he or she? how much of the electorate, how much of the population, who is that person? >> okay. yeah, as many in the audience already know, the latino population in the train is very diverse, coming from various national origin backgrounds. mexican-american primarily, of course there's cuban and puerto rican's. in arizona, the latino population there is like in neighboring states, primarily mexican origin. but one thing that's unique
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about the latino population in arizona is a lot of them are recent arrivals but not necessarily foreign-born but having migrated from let's say california, texas and mexico because of the drop of job in arizona on the last decade or so. that's not unlike the white population. it's very hard to find native arizonans. so a lot of people there are transplants and elsewhere. i think that explains a lot as to why the latino vote, latino voters are a sleeping giant in arizona. we saw them surging in new mexico of course, and, of course, colorado and nevada. but in arizona they are still asleep and people ask why. i think in part because they have not established the roots, the risen the community like latino populations have been, say, california or texas. >> do with the numbers a bit. what percentage of the population, what percentage of elected they made it this time around. give us a sense of the percentage of the population, the growth rates, the expansion.
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>> in arizona, approximately one-third of the population are hispanic background. but when we take into consideration qualifications to go, you only have 25% that are eligible to vote in terms of being over 18. but of the population, one-third are disqualified from participating in an election because of their citizenship status. so that whittles the numbers dramatically, so you really own have about 15% of the electora electorate, of the rush of voters being hispanic. >> what are the projections for, say, the next two decades or so? will they become, with a double in the national voting bloc? what are they doing? >> yeah, demographic trends in arizona suggest that latino populations, they will be a much larger share of the electorate and elections to come. but one thing that's important to keep in mind in arizona is
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not just what the latino population looks like and who they are. who is the white population in arizona. white population in arizona is a much bolder population -- folder by pushing to get a lot of get a lot of snowbirds, retirees to the one thing that you take into account about this demographic trend is the latino populace is very young. you have an older white population that is not replacing itself and is dying off. so that replacement of latinos into the electorate will i think probably happen a lot faster in arizona than we've seen in other states. >> so let's get into a little bit about what the latino vote in arizona cares about. and i guess give me a sense for, as we heard from andrew early, there's been this conflation of latino voters and immigration, and my profession like -- there is definite a lot of nuance that needs to be dealt with. what are the top issues that arizona latino voters, do they
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care about, and do we believe what they tell pollsters? there's some questions about polling among various subgroups. >> yeah. with respect to that latter question i would refer any member of the audience i want to get some good insight into the mind of latino voters, -- that this frequent point of latino voters in key states including arizona. so a lot of the numbers i refer to come from latino decisions. now, with respect to the concerns of latino voters. latino voters are not unlike other voters in the country over the last couple of years one of their most primary concerns has been the state of the economy. of course, their position had fixed the economy is different. falls along partisan lines. but closer related to that is immigration reform. and in arizona, latino voters show more concern over immigration reform, a passive of
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comprehension immigration reform come in part because of what is been happening in arizona. as many people now arizona is famous or infamous for the passage of s.b. 1070. and that has remained in the news. it was passed in the spring of 2010 but the drumbeat remains in the news over the last couple of years and, of course, it was held up in recent courtroom and, of course, like in activists on the ground was seeking to get latino voters registered and turned out to go, ever use the issue of s.b. 1070 as a talking point, a galvanizing lightning rod to get them registered and mobilize. >> i think we're talking earlier about the comparisons of polling from a number of states. looked at a number of states, was a pre-election polling just the night before the election i recall, the polling. look at a number of states, and arizona and north carolina both were the ones that had, that had
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that distinction i guess of immigration, of course the economy and whatnot. do you do any significance from that versus the other states they look at? >> yeah, i think that presents an opportunity. as tamar had mentioned at the beginning there was a lot of expectation from the latino voters that oh, my goodness you're going to get a latino elected to the u.s. senate from arizona, and perhaps joe arpaio will be gone a. that didn't transpire. but you look at the concern that latino voters in arizona, specifically they are split 50/50, 47% approximate 40% are saying the economy is important 47% saying immigration is important. that's at the forefront. that will remain because the latino activists that have been on the ground registering latino voters are still going out there and using that as a talking point to get them out to the polls spent i've been dancing around this question. let's get to. vaidya joe arpaio when? what happened in arizona issued?
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what was the difference between arizona and other places where we see latino voters and the particular issues that they promoted? >> when it comes down to, why did arpaio when? it was money. the race approximately $8 million of his campaign, for a county sheriff see. blue all records out of the water. >> to know what the previous record was? >> i think 2 million. i'm not sure that it was hand over fist money, and to use almost all of it for campaign ads. phoenix is not an expensive media market. his opponent and his democratic opponent, had about six to $800,000 on him. so it was unfair, right, just unfair playing field for the democratic candidate. and another thing i think that signals the latino voter can latino vote could make a difference was how arpaio changed his campaign ads. in the past used to talk about how tough on the poor, tough on
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immigration. his ads shifted to. it's what political scientist might refer to as rather than issue oriented ads, they became warm fuzzy. they -- feature him sitting with his wife who we've never seen before really. talking about is if the years in law enforcement, how he's a grandfather who cares about children. and who doesn't care about children, right? he very much shifted the tone because i think the recall of russell peters sent a signal to a lot of elected republicans in arizona that if you continued to march down that road of scapegoating latino voters, they can turn out and vote you out of office, as we saw with russell pearce, who was the author of arizona -- doing anything about latino voters in that arpaio raise? >> i'm still waiting to get the precinct level data can but what from what i'm hearing from a lot of people that were active in mobilizing latino voters, they did break records in terms of getting more latinos registered
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of course but i think there was a 40% increase in the number of latinos registered from 2008 to 2012. and, of course, that result in more latinos turning out to the polls. and one thing that these activists did was educate latino voters. instead of just lined them up, educating them on how to vote and specifically how to vote in arizona. because we have a mail in ballot process because of a voter id law in place. so a lot of the organizations were educating latino voters, look at it may be easier for you to sign up on the mailing list so that we don't have to do with identification, what have you don't have the proper id to vote in person. i think that explains whether so many mail-in ballots cast in the general election 2012. >> i want to get back to the senate race and equipment but stick with a voter id requirement and whatnot, and talk about the restriction, what exactly the requirements are.
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in particular, there's been questioned at the national level about republicans, whether they're using voter id requirements to clamp down on voter turnout from certain areas. one of the concerns? how our latino voters in arizona from in arizona from how in arizona to how our beginning with the? are there problems we are hearing? is there going to be a battle over trying to tighten the voter id requirements? or is it a photo id requirement? >> yeah. really quickly arizona's voter id law was voted on by, back in 2004 with proposition 200. it was challenged in federal court. and it was shot down at district level and he was going to be put on appeal but the marian indiana case rendered that move which india has a tougher voter id law than arizona. so challenges to arizona's voter id law were dropped. the basic requires are just that you have to have a picture id,
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state drivers license for instance, and the important thing though is your address your registered at has to match the address on the identities. this content populations that are more mobile than others, younger than others, and that's latino voters. >> is there a sense that this was targeted towards latino vote or one its it something that will be used to try to clamp down on latino votes? >> well, the initial challenges, your challenge is being filed by the not hope nation code. it also affected him. to actually settle out of course with a state of arizona and there were exceptions given to them about navajo nation i.t. that they could use to vote. but latino voters, the loss of being filed, the evidence they were bringing were showing that there was a drop off in latino voter registration following the implementation of proposition 200 as for as i say, prop 200 the voter id law in arizona is
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the law. is not going to be challenged. it's going to pretty much stay in place spent i said we'd get back to the senate race. let's do that. you have arpaio went and had a latino candidate, a democratic candidate lose. what happened in the senate race? you have jeff flake, a longtime incumbent who has a track record, an interesting truckload on the immigration issue. talk about the way latinos voted in there and the way immigration played. >> you. well, to answer your question why did flake when, it really boils down to name recognition. flake as you indicated, is a well-known name in arizona politics. serving sense, you know, a decade, and the feminine goes way back. his heritage goes way back to the pioneers. that's another thing, factor to
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keep in mind just the level of enthusiasm among mormon voters were voting for jeff flake but also get mitt romney on the ballot, a mormon candidate. to get high levels of enthusiasm among mormon, the mormon electorate to vote for the two candidates, and that was a significant hurdle for carmona, and obama's campaign to overcome in arizona. >> let's delve into that really briefly because it seems like there is, it seems like there's a potential path for victory for republicans that doesn't necessarily involve latino voters if they can find other ways to tap in and expand their bases. as you just said such as the mormon vote. i guess the question is, the republican party in arizona, how do they go forward? do they choose to move towards trying to find other cases of support? do they try to reach out to latino voters? what is their strategy going forward, and how viable is that strategy? is there a viable strategy for them to find voters elsewhere
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and ignore the latino voter? >> i don't think they can continue to ignore the latino vote. now that jeff flake is in office, it will be interesting to watch whether he comes back home to his original position, being an advocate for immigration reform. when he made a run for the u.s. senate seat, given the politics of their so he certain shifted back and making border top much like we saw john mccain in 2008 build of that bank transfers before we talk about immigration reform. but now he is elected for the next six years perhaps he might be one of the key republicans that brings up and pushes for comprehensive immigration reform in the u.s. senate. and one interesting serving note that came from the latino poll on election eve was a question that asked latino voters in arizona about the willingness to vote for republicans. if they took a leadership role on comprehensive immigration reform. 31% of latino voters in arizona said if republican party took a leadership role and it sure the path to comprehensive
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immigration reform, that would make them more likely to vote for the republican party. and i think that finding right there tells the republicans in arizona that rather than pursuing a strategy that perhaps arpaio and russell pearce chose to do in the past, they may want to be rethinking their strategy and look at the demographic growth trends in arizona. >> which leads right into the issue of, we talked about this slightly, the south over the last several, actually over the last generation has steadily moved from a democratic, solid democratic voting bloc to republican stronghold. we've seen somewhat emergence of something similar with latino voters or at least -- in colorado, nevada and new mexico. how does arizona fit into that? arizona is not yet there. talk about why there is, they're not at the level i would put nevada and colorado a swing state, new mexico might be more solidly democratic at this point
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point. where is arizona along the trajectory? and will we eventually see the emergence of the latino swing bloc? with the -- or will remain i guess the reverse opposite for like arizona one side and others on the other. >> i'm always hesitant to look into her crystal ball, making these predictions about politics because there's so many what ifs. assuming though that nothing changes in arizona, arizona will become a loose, or swing state or perhaps a blue state like new mexico. colorado, nevada are now swing states because of the latino vote. recent arizona is not there yet is because the white vote there is much more conservative than the white vote in nevada and colorado. but again, that white vote is aging and dying off at a very, very quick read and been replaced by younger latino vote. sticks which. demographic trends the demographic will make the latino vote that much more important as
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we go forward? >> absolutely. as i mentioned before that does not mean republicans don't stand a chance in arizona. latinos are willing to vote for republicans, and they have indicated their willingness to do so if republicans take up the cause of something that's near and utility voters right now and that is immigration reform. >> what our bettina voters looking for specifically on immigration reform in arizona? is path which his citizenship, it's interesting, i went back and was looking over these numbers and the worst path which his citizenship were almost nonexistent in my possession an article can people never talk about pathway to citizenship if there was always the difference in amnesty and enforcement back 10 years ago or so, starting, actually it's shocking how little people actually did it. it's been a six fold increase in the use of the word pathway to citizenship since 2004 through 2008. is pathway to citizenship and
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end-all, is there something less than that that latino voters in arizona would settle for, or they're looking for a good faith effort are looking for legal status? what are they looking for? >> well, pathway to citizenship, or amnesty as we might recall back in 1986, with ronald reagan, is one of the key things that latinos are looking for with comprehensive immigration reform. and one of the reasons why, i mean, you might ask, well, the voters, u.s. citizens, why should they care about pathway to citizenship if they are already citizens. latino voters are very connected to individuals who do not have that citizenship status. whether they are here legally or illegally. the survey data compiled by latino decisions found that of latino voters, ma approximately two-thirds indicated that they know someone he was here with an undocumented status. and furthermore, there's
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classifications of undocumented status, and when we hear a lot about is the so-called dream act students. those individuals who came at a young age. you know, we now obama issued an order to change dhs deportation policy which really made latino voters more democratic -- more enthusiastic for the democratic ticket. but two-thirds of latino voters know someone here, that is here illegally. but more than half know someone that can meet that dream act qualification. and this is why latino voters are very concerned about immigration reform. and specifically that pathway to citizenship it is because it might affect them indirectly, via a friend or family member. >> i think we're going to go to questions from the audience. so we will do that in just a minute. i wanted to get to one other sort of the important question here, which is the republican, the primary versus the german election trap, republicans have
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experienced. what is the situation we have in arizona question mentioned conservative, the conservative white population. go into what the republicans face, trying to run in a primary versus general election. get election. two-and-a-half to throw a harder line on immigration, and it have to draw a harder line on latino voters overall? >> one thing that is, well, i get a lot of questions from people outside of arizona all the time that involves the first question which is what is wrong with arizona? particularly with arizona politics. one thing i have to tell individuals is we have a unique election system specifically with clean elections. you can get matching dollar for dollar contributions from the state of arizona should you be going up against a well-financed candidate would've been a primary or general election. and this has dramatically shifted the type of republicans that are now being elected to arizona state legislature. now with clean elections, rather than having to appeal to certain
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-- chamber of commerce intercept them what i call the country club republican, you go to state of arizona and be an ideologue and get matching dollar for dollar, so your moderate business-oriented republicans have been pushed out over the last 10, 15 years because of those clean election candidates that come with specific issue or ideology or agenda. and that explains a lot like the rise of russell pearce, but also we also know that russell pearce recall. that happened at the primary level. the primary elections, grassroots activist, in russell pearce's backyard. and recruitment by those latino activists of a more moderate republican, and jerry lewis, to knock off russell pearce. and it also, unicom it was an interesting race because it also shows about the divide within the mormon community. russell pearce, a mormon. jerry lewis, a moment.
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but a mormon who was adopting, in salt lake city as a much moderate position on immigration and as, say, russell pearce. the mormon church was instrument in passing what was called, then called the utah compact. basically a degree by the mormon church and certain organizations in utah think we're going to treat all individuals with dignity and respect. and not demonize them essentially. and that influence has been coming down to arizona specifically within the mormon community, because the mormon church is very concerned about its outreach to latino voters. one of the biggest growth rates for the mormon church are latinos. when you have individuals like russell pearce, a representative of the mormon church doing what he has done, mormon missionaries find the door he slammed in their faces. so i think that's something, going forward, the role of the mormon church in arizona and pushing for their republican elected officials, moderate position is something that i
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suspect we might see happening more and more. .. >> if you look beyond the demographic numbers in terms of just like socioeconomic characteristics, um, you know, a single-parent household's use of welfare programs, you know, low income tax burden, they look a lot like democratic voters. what is the situation in arizona? are those voters waiting to become -- are they conservative voters waiting to be tapped by republicans, or are they
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democratic voters, or are they true swing voters? >> at the moment they are hard core democratic voters. but, you know, their position in other -- their loyalty to the democratic party is not rock hard. we saw this in 2010. following, you know, the long, drawn-out process to pass health care reform, the congressional calendar got compressed, democrats in congress and the white house said what are we going to take up in the remaining six months we have, comprehensive immigration reform or climate legislation? the white house chose the path of climate change legislation, passing out a cap and trade act to deal with global warming instead of pursuing comprehensive immigration reform. this upset latino voters across the country, but especially in arizona. voters chose to stay home. not that they can't go vote -- they didn't go vote for the republican party, because at the time the republican party wasn't doing outreach, but they did not see their loyalty to the
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democratic party -- we did not see it that strong in 2010 because of the failure to democrats to even signal they felt it was important. >> talk real briefly about the actual leadership organizations within arizona. who is, who is going after these voters, who's recruiting them, and are they -- what's the relationship between them? are they leading latino voters? are the latino voters pulling the organizations along? how is that working? >> yeah. i think there's been a change in the organizations and partly the organizational structure but also their strategy in going out to latino communities and getting latinos registered to vote and mobilized. i would think that maybe about eight years ago i would describe it as a lot of activists from the 1960s, a lot of people with the long hair and the bandannas and, you know, marching their civil rights songs, and it just didn't work with, right? a lot of latino voters just didn't connect to that message.
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what you have now are latino organizations, one of the piggest ones in arizona -- biggest ones in arizona is latino arizona x their message is they're not hearkening back to the 1960s, they're talking about 2012 and what latino voters need now, and that's immigration reform. you have a lot of the dream act individuals that are not allowed to vote in elections. they're going out and registering latino voters. and i have former students that are impacted by this, and what they say to me is that while they cannot vote, they're making sure that -- they're getting people there that they know can vote for them x. that's dramatic change from what we saw in 2008 and 2004. >> actually going ahead and doing pairing, saying, look, you go vote because i can't vote individually, you go vote. >> yes. >> i see we've gotten the stop sign, so that already all. thank you very much, professor. >> thank you. [applause]
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[inaudible conversations] >> thank you so much. [inaudible] so now we are going to zoom out and get the national picture, and we're going to do this -- [inaudible]
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we have -- [inaudible] personally involved in the campaigns, a democrat, very personally involved in the campaigns, and a nonpartisan analyst who's been looking at this subject for many years. and they're going to look at two really big questions, or all the questions they're going to look at fall into two buckets. one is what actually happened this fall, what happened on election day, what happened in the runup to election, who voted where. we're going to try to get you some detail on that, sort of dig a little deeper under the myth of, you know, the giant -- or not the myth, but the big, national story of the giant that determined the election, and number two, they're going to look from their different points of view at the future, because the future really is kind of the game here. there is no doubt that on the,
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we're at the very beginning stages of the sea change that's going to transform american politics. and just to unpack that a little bit, let me talk, go a little deeper into that number i threw out earlier, a vote that is going to double in size over the next 20 years. so that's a pew number. the pew research center, and if you want to look up the paper, it was issued on november 14th. and, of course, there's a number of different assumptions that go into a projection like that, um, some variables. so, number one, the authors assume that this year's success, this flexing of muscle and sense of power, is going to encourage latinos to register and vote. because although the vote was important this time, latino registration and voting rates are still very, very low, way beneath a non-hispanic white and african-american voters. and i'm sure someone on the panel will tell us a little more
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about that. so one of the assumptions was that this year's success will encourage political activity, civic activity. paper also assumes the kindness will eventually create a path to citizenship for the millions of unauthorized immigrants already in the country, and the third assumption was that, um, that the five million latinos living in the u.s. who are already eligible to become citizens but haven't done it yet, green cardholders who could become citizens but haven't naturalized, that they will. all those three assumptionings made up together made up only a small piece of this doubling. because the real motor of the doubling, the real driver of change is age or, actually, more accurately, youth. and to understand this, you have to think about two numbers. this year 12.5 million latinos voted, 12.5. the other number, there are 18
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million latinos in america who are under 18 years old. 12.5, 18. and 93% of them are u.s.-born citizens. all they have to do is grow up. like nothing has to happen. congress doesn't have to do anything. all they have to do, and i guarantee you they will, is grow up. [laughter] so welcome to the future. a vote that is likely to double by 2030. and that opens a whole lot of a whole box -- i won't say pandora's box, because it's a good box, treasure chest -- of interesting questions for this panel. how are latinos going to use their newfound, growing power? what, obviously s the latino vote going to mean for both parties? very fraught question. what are latino voters in the future going to look like? because, after all, the generation you're seeing now is really a transitional
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generation, right? they're on tear way to becoming americans -- their way to becoming americans. in a generation, latinos may look different. they still will remember what happened now, and we'll talk about that, but they will look different. an even bigger question, and we're taxing the crystal ball powers of my panel, but what is the latino vote going to mean for the issues at the center of american politics? could that change, will that change? so there are a lot of really interesting questions, and it is -- we are going to do some future gazing here. but, um, want to dig in to what we know and what we can say about those big questions. so i'm going to introduce the panelists as i ask them their first question rather than just, you know, boring recitation of your brilliant qualifications. so, dan, let's start with you. >> all right. >> and the question is, what did you do, so to speak, on your autumn vacation? [laughter] you, obviously, come out of a lot of big jobs in the obama administration, but you were most recently president, one of
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of president obama's principal surrogates in spanish-language media. what did the election look like from your point of view, you know, what can you tell us about that we didn't read in the newspaper, and, you know, from your personal experience, tell us what happened. >> i think the way to understand kind of my role as a surrogate this year is in juxtaposition to four years ago. i basically played the same role in '08 and '12 in terms of outreach to spanish-language media on behalf of the president and then-candidate. and the fascinating thing for me as i emerged from government and went out, back into campaign land was the proliferation of spanish-language media outlets. in 2008 spanish-language media essentially meant national spanish-language media which was two, univision and telemundo. a little bit of cnn in espanol. and local media in south florida. and that's pretty much the sum total of what, of the outlets
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that i hit over and over and over and over again four years ago. this time i ended up doing media in, again, the national, univision, telemundo, now there's mundo fox, cnn in espanol has a bigger footprint than four years ago, and in ten states. i did radio in iowa and ohio, in north carolina and virginia. obviously, in florida. but in nevada and colorado and new mexico and arizona. and it's that deepening and that proliferation of spanish-language media outlets that i think tells you a lot about that we can go into later about the proliferation of the latino vote. obviously, this is a segment of the latino vote, the spanish-dominant portion of it, but an interesting subset of the vote. so that, i think that kind of difference between '08 and '12, it also gets into some of the structural differences of the obama campaign, obama for america in '08 versus '12 that
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we can get into later. >> well, talk a little more about that. so you talked about how it's changing the media, and we have what rudy told us about arizona, that changing the organizational style. so how's it changing the substance of how democrats, you know, is that changing? is the way that democrats are talking to latino, has that even changed? >> absolutely. i think a couple of things happened. we started much, much earlier this time. i think for all those, a word of hope for republicans -- not something i often do. [laughter] let's remember back to the spring of 2008. there was a candidate in that election who had a latino problem that, you know, latinos weren't going to vote for. quite famously said by a pretty well-recognized expert on the latino vote. that candidate was barack obama. he had gotten a later start engaging with the latino electorate than his primary rival, then-senator clinton.
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this time -- and it was true. we started later in '08 for a variety of reasons than had the clinton campaign. this time you had a latino vote director in chicago in a year out -- >> wow. >> you had many more people in chicago dedicated to, um, targeting latino voters, finding them and communicating with them in that whole spectrum of ways you've heard about the obama campaign communicating with folks, with new technologies. you also had a lot of segmentation. one of the reasons that i was able to do, um, interviews in all the places that i talked about, i happen to speak a very neutral spanish. you can't really place my spanish geographically. kind of quirky set of reasons. and that allowed osa to use me in multiple places. i did one interview all fall, which was orlando, which has a large spanish-language media,
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but it's a puerto rican electorate. and you don't need somebody with my skill set or even my neutral spanish speaking to puerto ricans. you need fellow puerto ricans speaking to puerto ricans. and that's also true in other parts of the country. there was a much more deliberate effort this time to insure in ads and in media outreach and just people-to-people outreach that you were speaking to and through folks from the same subgroup. >> and different issues as well? i mean, does immigration come into -- >> interesting, the issues this time at least in my experience, and you saw this borne out a little bit in the national exit polls, the issues that latinos cared about this time were very much the mainstream, if you will, the national issues. the economy was 60%, health care overperformed in terms of an issue that latinos cared about more in the national exit polls than did the rest of the
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electorate. um, the budget deficit, um, and then foreign policy. so the four top issues were the same in a slightly different order than they were for the rest of the electorate. um, the budget deficit and health care were in opposite places for the rest of the electorate. um, time it was a little more -- this time it was a little more those domestic issues, those domestic-driven issues than four years ago in my experience. again, part of that is where the media was focused, and the nature of the spanish-speaking community in south florida that's particularly foreign policy driven. but this time even that community wasn't -- and to the extent i was talking about foreign policy, i was talking about benghazi rather than cuba. >> last question, you didn't use the word immigration. immigration was not in that -- >> it came up a little, it came up -- >> a little bit. >> it came up a little bit, and it came up in the following way, um, people wanted to know that the president cared about the
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issue. they wanted to understand why it hadn't been achieved in his first term. um, it served almost in these interviews the same function that i view it serving generally, which is that of of a threshold issue. and by that i mean if you're okay on immigration, they'll listen to the rest of it. if you're not okay on immigration, they're not going to listen to the rest of of it. which i think is part of -- i don't think it's fully the problem republicans have right now with latinos, but it's part of. so it served a little bit, again, in this kind of anecdotal evidence derived from interviews that it was an issue, but it was almost a you're okay on this issue, let's talk about the rest of it. >> fascinating. great. okay, alfonso, same question to you. what did you do on your autumn vacation? now, i know that you organized an independent expenditure spanish-language tv ad campaign in nevada. so explain to us what that means, how does that work, um,
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what were the ads like, um, what did the election look like from your point of view and if you will in your first intervention, stick to your personal experience, and then we'll broaden it out. >> right. well, the great thing about doing an independent expenditure is that it's independent. coordinating with the republican party or the romney campaign. i'm not here, thankfully, to defend the romney campaign. [laughter] but we realized that we needed to do something different, that the latino vote was going to be decisive, and with the limited funding that we had, we said let's go to a state where we can make a difference, a state that is manageable and show that, yes, indeed we recognize that the economy is the number one issue, unemployment, but that we can't just talk about it through ads. we have to actually go to the community and go one vote, go after every single voter. something that i think the obama
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campaign did very well. and that's what we did in nevada. again, with very limited funding. so there was a very organized grassroots effort because we knew we had limited funding. we couldn't reach, engage absolutely every single latino voter in nevada. the latino vote went from 15% to 18% dramatically, and so we worked with evangelical churches recognizing that that's a sector of the latino electorate where conservatives are very strong, and so we did community meetings, town halls. we had town halls of over 200 people. imagine, conservatives doing a town hall with over 200 people. nobody read about this or heard about this because it wasn't happening. it was just happening in nevada. we ran ads. the issue said was we believe that with latinos, we need a combined message. we couldn't win just by talking
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out on unemployment and the economy. again, talking about unemployment and the economy in a grassroots way, it, you know, in a populist way making the argument why the policies of the president are not good for the latino community or for rah tee know businesses. -- for latino businesses. but then we understood that immigration was a very important issue, and somehow we needed to neutralize it. so we talked about obama's failed promise on immigration, promised immigration he didn't deliver when he had a democratic house and senate, and we also brought up another issue which was deportations which wasn't talked at all in the campaign. where the president was attacking mitt romney for saying that the arizona law was a model for the nation. he didn't exactly say that. but regardless, the romney campaign didn't explain the position, the governor's position very well. but attacking arizona during his first term, president has
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implemented an enforcement policy that is much more punitive than the arizona law, deporting more people than any other president in history. the majority of them, people without criminal records. so we ran ads in spanish language about this, and we also topped it off talking about social issues. basically, the president's position on life, on marriage saying the president is too radical for latinos. understanding there's a big chunk of the latino electorate that is very socially conservative and will vote exclusively for those issues. and then finally, we had a very strong get out the vote effort, persuasive calls, so it was a very, an overall effort. to include the only state where romney did better than mccain this time around was nevada. >> okay. >> by about four points. that's nothing, right? [laughter] but is it coincidence?
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perhaps. but it's, i think it shows that if you invest in an effort and you have a broad message, a populace message, you can win. at the end, obviously, we were outspent. governor romney had made very unfortunate statements during the campaign about immigration. he was handicapped from the beginning. i'd say he was mortally wounded from the beginning. however, i would disagree with dan in the sense that immigration was key. >> but that's what's so interesting, right? the asymmetry here is fascinating. for dem kuralts they don't have to talk about -- democrats they don't have to talk about it, republicans do have to talk about it all the time. fascinating asymmetry. so but let me press you a little bit on these social issues. i mean, the polling is very mixed on that. i've been saying for years, you know, it's the great reagan line about latinos and republicans, they just don't know it, but the polling is kind of coming up kind of mixed. >> first of all, we understood
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as we went in -- and this is a very important point -- latinos are not a monolithic community. this whole latino vote phenomenon is an american phenomenon. you come here, you're from cuba, you're from nicaragua, you're from guatemala, you're from mexico, you're not latino. you come here and all of a sudden you are latino. what does that mean? we are seeing an incredible change in the latino community. the latino community 30 years ago is very different from the latino community today. i think about 40% today are foreign-born generally. the rest, many, perhaps most are the children of immigrants. so with the electorate we're seeing that. i mean, we still have multigeneration allah tee knows from the southwest, puerto ricans in new york and chicago who are very liberal, but we're starting to see the rise of foreign-born latinos and their children who tend to be more conservative. i mean, just look at the pew numbers. on abortion still the majority believe that abortion should be legal compared to about 40% of the rest of the population.
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marriage, that is shifting. it has certainly shifted in the past five years, but there's still a good chunk of that electorate that is very conservative when it comes to, to marriage. the question is with social issues is not are you going to scare voters away. we believe that those who vote exclusively for those issues are going to vote, are mostly religious people who are going to vote for the candidate who has the traditional positions. nobody's not going to vote against the candidate because of their position of marriage within the latino community. >> right. it's scary to me because it is a place where we're not looking, again, we're not looking to the future. as a republican, we're counting on the older ones and not looking to how the vote is going to change. >> but you would be surprised. with the children of foreign-born latinos, they're still much more conservative than the rest of the population. >> okay. we'll come back to this.
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we'll come back to this. roberto, your turn. so you're the analyst. you're -- i'm sure you are partisan somewhere deep down, but you're here many your nonpartisan -- in your nonpartisan guise. professor in two different schools at the university of california, the an enberg school for journalism and the school for policy planning and development, also the director of the rivera institute. so do this little john king thing for us here. -- [laughter] pretended we don't have that map with the counties -- >> i've got the spread sheet. >> with good. everybody nationally's been talking about this in a very undifferentiated way. to the degree they're talking about it at all, they're giving us states and this imimagine of big number -- image of big numbers. although this is a very significant phenomenon, we're still talking about very small numbers and relatively contained. so, i mean, just setting it up for folks, i mean, we know that
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in some states the latino vote didn't matter, didn't make the margin at all, iowa, pennsylvania, new hampshire, latinos had little, if anything, to do with it. in nevada, new mexico, colorado, florida could have made the difference. so what was involved in that? do the john king scenario. what can you tell us? >> all right. well, i think, you know, people have already spoken here about the importance of disaggregating this vote, and you can, you can cut it a lot of different ways. one of -- in trying to understand what happened in november, one of a still nascent thought that's developing in my mind is trying to understand how latino voters in different parts of the country functioned as part of a larger, the larger coalition that elected obama. the focus has been traditionally
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very much and throughout this conversation as if these were actors operate anything a void -- operating in a void. that it's all about their characteristics, their identity, their views, when, in fact, we know they, that politics especially in this go round, the nature of coalition-building in the end turned out to be one of the very critical factors, maybe the historical, the lasting, historical change in electoral politics from these last two cycles is the effect of his coalition building. it really depends whether it was a one-off or not, that's another question. so if you think about latinos that way as an element of the obama coalition more so than just this isolated, sleeping giant -- really unfortunate metaphor which i've been dealing with since i first started
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writing about this too many years ago -- you, um, one of the, the patterns that develops is the extent to which you see with preliminary data still, um, that latino voters in different parts of the country really did respond to circumstances. and that in the key, the key states where they made a difference, the swing states that didn't matter in the end -- colorado, nevada, florida in particular -- new mexico's kind of an outlier because of its own, its own peculiar politics and demographics. but in those states, um, there's some, you know, there's some very interesting places to look and see, um, what you, what you've got. so, and to contrast to places
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like texas where a lot of the future is going to play out -- >> okay, so take us into those places. >> okay. so if you look at, um, take a place like clark county, nevada. >> that's suburbs of of -- >> it's las vegas. it's a suburb of los angeles. [laughter] in more ways than one. [inaudible conversations] no, it is -- >> talking like a true an lean that. >> politically it is, and we see that in this election. >> what do you mean? >> the miuation from within -- migration from within the united states to las vegas over the last ten years has been driven overwhelmingly by californians and mostly to clark county. and as a result you now have the state where one urban area has got the biggest concentration of votes, and the people in that urban area are distinctly different than the rest of the state. >> okay. >> i mean, and latinos included. latinos, to a certain extent, have accultureated into, and
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clark county now has its own political life. the democratic party has its own life there, the republican party there developed a tea party alternative and went way off the charts. and so you -- it's an example of there, denver as well, different kind of democratic coalition, somewhat different roots, different flavor, different opposition. but in denver county and arapaho county which is the southern and eastern suburbs of denver, you saw latinos really functioning as part of a working coalition. >> so what does that mean in terms of numbers? i mean, help us understand that. >> well, in -- so in denver latinos make up 30% of the population. >> 30? >> 30. 30% of -- this is, no, the -- yeah, 30% of the eligibles.
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>> right. >> in denver are latinos. denver county. obama carried it by 74%. clark county latinos make up 20% of the electorate, obama carried it by 56 and change. >> so it's what you're saying, it's latinos as part of a broader democratic league. >> part of, not as singularly making a decision on their own, but operating within a coalition. >> uh-huh. >> and i think that has real implications both in the way you read these numbers. more importantly is in the second part of the conversation, how you imagine them as political actors going forward. buff i would contrast this -- but i would contrast this, for example, to bear county, texas, san antonio. home of the castro brothers, the future of the democratic party -- good castro brothers. [laughter] >> right. our castro brothers. >> mayor of san antonio and what's the other one? [inaudible conversations] >> 50% of the eligibles are
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latinos, right? 50%. and obama carried it by 51.6% of the vote. so this takes, these numbers take some digging, but it's clear that there you had in bear county where in this new, the new coalition is being born, this place where, you know, texas is going to turn purple, and bear county is the new boston, it's -- you've got to ask yourself about that latino vote. it's a very middle class, very middle of the road mexican-american vote. and in that context where there's a weaker democratic coalition in a much larger messaging from the republican party, you got what would appear to be a much more even split. we have to do precinct-level analysis there to really try and figure that out. >> but, i mean, actually, i mean, as a sort of -- you know,
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if you were an uninitiated listener, what would be stunning here is that these places in america where it's 20%, 30%, 50% latino vote, right? that's the first -- >> but that doesn't predict what the outcome is going to be. >> yeah. >> you can look at the hispanic share -- >> and that doesn't tell you. what was the -- >> pardon me? >> what was the, just among latinoses, the percentage? >> we don't know. >> you don't know? that's what we need to look for. >> right. >> right. >> but miami-dade is another, you know, florida is another place where it's -- miami-dade is now the home of a really interesting, complicated, mixed-up political can coalition where you have cubans and non-cuban hispanics finding common cause with african-americans, haitians and a big lgbt community, big arts community, a lot of interim migrants from -- internal migrants from new york where the same way clark county has been,
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you've got a pop, a core of white democratic activists that have brought california politics to nevada. in miami you've got a core of new york, northeastern democratic activists who brought those politics to south florida. and within that you are now starting to see very effective latino players. democratic congressman won a race against a highly-flawed republican candidate but still won who formed a coalition that, you know, went from miami beach through working class neighborhoods all the way down to the keys with very distinct, different working-class whites, gays, you know, snowbirders and then a big chunk of cuban and non-cuban latinos. so you asked -- in the second part of it, it really then you
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start thinking about identity politics in a different way. if you are thinking of a group that has flexed its muscles by virtue of being part of a coalition as opposed to having flexed its muscles as being a plaintiff, as having been alone, as being outside or saying these are my claims. and i am pressing these claims alone as opposed to saying i've, i have achieved a level of success by being part of a much larger political establishment. >> okay, interesting. so, dan, you're nodding away. come in. >> a couple of -- i agree with roberto, i think you need to see in the and understand the latino vote as part of, and certainly chicago viewed latinos and this president from, you know, multiple years back saw them as part of a coalition and a governing -- both a political coalition, but also a governing coalition. and a -- and there's historical
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evidence, obviously, for what roberto was just talking about in terms of who engages what community and their voting behavior later. cubans are an interesting example, right? there's two big pockets of cuban-americans in the united states. one in south florida which until this election was a predominantly republican-voting phenomena, and those in union city, new jersey, um, who have, you know, electorally expressed themselves via the democratic party. and a lot of that dose to who en-- goes to who engaged them when they showed up and cultivated their political activity and included them in the political activity that was going on at that time in those communities. so i think there's a lot to be said for viewing the influence of latinos in this cycle and particularly going forward as part of a broader coalition. um, and one that, you know, i've heard time and time again everybody likes, republicans love to go back to the reagan quote. the national exit polls this year shouldn't give you a lot of comfort.
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>> right. >> it's, you know, two-thirds support for abortion rights, 60% support for the affordable care act. um, the almost 59% support for same-sex marriage. those are, this is among hispanics in the national exit poll. that doesn't sound particularly socially conservative to me. >> no. >> so -- >> and, and also the question i think at some level becomes, and this is more for the demographers and the people who, you know, i'm not a -- [inaudible] which is a dangerous thing to say in this day and age, you know, are hispanic millennials more like millennials -- >> right. >> or are hispanic millennials more like traditional hispanics, if such a thing exists? >> save that thought. let's dig a little deeper, and i'm trying to keep putting you on the spot. >> oh, no, no. >> i'm interested in your take. can republicans appeal to
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hispanics, even if we can take the immigration thing off the table, can we appeal? >> let me quickly respond to dan. look, i think on social issues and la tee knows -- latinos, we have to do a lot of research because there's contradictory data. we have the exit polling. you have recent polling from illinois showing that latinos there are very, the majority are for marriage and for, and believe abortion should be illegal. i mean, i think that the pew hispanic center numbers on abortion that contradict the exit polling. i never said that we were going to win the la latino vote exclusively with social issues. that has to be part of the mix. my point is that we live in -- going to roberto's point, absolutely. i think that the obama campaign did a marvelous, superb job in building coalitions, in really spending money, outspending us on latino, grassroots outreach incredibly. i mean, in some places there was
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absolutely no outreach from grassroots outreach from the republican side. but it seems to metathat at the end the it's not -- me that at the end it's not only coalitions or about being in the community. yes, we have to be there early, we have to spend money in grassroots efforts. that is key to compete. but at the end with latinos, ideas matter. and i go back to immigration. if -- republicans bought this idea fed to them by republican strategists within the beltway. some people that you know about, that you've heard about. mr. rove, and i keep saying this because everybody says we should go back to karl rove's concept of the big tent. no. for karl rove the big tent is big, but it's empty. [laughter] because it's just to talk about the economy. talk about the economy, talk about the economy. don't talk about immigration. we went into nevada, people said don't talk about social issues, don't talk about immigration. and i said i'm going to talk
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about social issues, and i'm going to talk about immigration. we need -- the problem was that they thought that, the strategists told the republican candidates to win the primary you have to move to the extreme right on immigration. you have to sound like a restrictionist. and that is wrong. every study shows the american people, republicans and democrats, support immigration reform. he could have had a much more constructive message from the beginning of the primary. and if -- and i think he would have been much more competitive in the general election. now, i'm not saying that if you just have a good position on immigration that you're going to win enough support from latino voters, but at least -- >> they hear you. >> they're not tuning you out. because we were tuned out completely. they were not listening to us. and, again, i go back to spanish-language media, which i did a lot. i was part of the univision coverage of election night, and
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it sounded like we're covering the presidential election and immigration. because of the emphasis on immigration. it was all about immigration. so it can go a very long way. ideas, ideas matter. and to finish, i think that also the last pew hispanic center polls on party affiliation is very revealing. i think it shows that up to 51% of latinos today in terms of party affiliation identify as independent. you know, i would not reach the conclusion that republicans have lost the latino vote forever, and democrats, you know, are really winning over the la too e know vote -- latino vote. latinos didn't vote for obama because they were enamored with barack obama. that's not what happened. we had a terrible candidate who ran a lousy campaign, and he had terrible positions on immigration. >> okay. so i want to go down the row starting with roberto -- [applause] starting with roberto.
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can we -- i mean, assuming republicans can wipe the slate clean on immigration, you know, next week -- which we all know is not going to happen, it's going to be a long, hard rooted rooted -- road to get to solve it, how long is the memory of this going to last? i mean, when african-americans vote today, you know, so lopsidedly democratic, they're not remembering the 1960s and '70s, but at some level they're remembering the 1960s and '70s. i'd like to hear all of you talk about what's the half-life. you know, even if we could get it right now, how do you see that playing out? >> well, you know, judging from -- we don't have a lot of past performances to base this on except for one very dramatic one which is california where the republican party succeeded in the mid 1990s as painting itself as the party, taking a hard line on immigration and one that was exuberant about
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rhetoric that was in images that were quite graphically demonized -- >> they keep coming. >> right. they keep coming. that was pete wilson's ad in the 1994, his successful re-election. much harsher rhetoric than anything we've seen, much more memorable, still on youtube and playable, but had a really lasting impact. one of the dynamics of the immigration issue that i think seems quite clear, um, is that it works very well -- always has -- as a negative mobilization issue. you can, you can mobilize people to anger over immigration on both sides of the issue. >> right. >> it's worked both ways. it's actually, it has a much longer and effective history,
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um, of animating political behavior towards restriction than it does towards generous policies. but you could also as republicans have shown in the last 10, 15 years quite consistently, you can really get -- you can create grudges among people by demonizing them through immigration. so how long does it last? how deeply was, is the wound here? you know, it's really hard to say. >> yeah. >> you look at the presidential level in particular, we've -- the republican chair has bounced around, you know, to some extent. george h.w. bush got up to the mid 30s. ronald reagan brought it up to the mid 30s. bob dole in the midst of the
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anti-immigrant sentiment of the 1990s took it back below 30. george w. bush got it back up to the magic 40% that karl rove thought was the jumping-off point for neutralizing all these questions. so, you know, how -- we're talking about a fairly small margin of voters here. so if you, you know, a 10% shift in latino votes, moving a million two, million three, you know, the actual -- what the turnout is we don't really know yet. it's going the take a while. the exit poll numbers are losing credibility as time goes on, but that's -- i don't want to get too -- >> john king. >> geeky with you. yeah. [laughter] but the shift of a million voters, million and a half voters and romney would have been in the mid 30s in terms of his share. and everybody would have said that was a pretty good night for a republican. now, what would have happened in terms of actual states, i knew
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you were going to ask -- [laughter] >> and then i want to go down the row to get everyone. >> it's interesting, because it doesn't -- it would have, i'll leave it to the pundits to determine whether, you know, if the exit polls were correct, which is an if, and you shifted 10%, took 10% of the latino vote out of obama's column and put it on romney's column, romney would have squeaked florida, would have clearly carried florida. would not necessarily have carried nevada or colorado, but they would have been close. nevada would have been very, i mean, whisper, whisker close. and colorado would have been closer. it would have been close. it wasn't even close. so it's not -- that would not have been a panacea. um, you know, a lot of this latino vote is just, is padding
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states like new york and california. you know, obama had this much-touted margin of four and a half thousand -- four and a half million votes among latinos, right? three and a half million latino votes. but 40% of that margin sits in -- >> california and illinois. >> where he got ridiculous amounts of votes. but it doesn't -- >> doesn't matter. >> you could spend a lot of time and money racking up those votes, and it's bragging rights for one night. >> so, dan -- >> but, actually, but we did -- the interesting thing is those are places where, again, what would a targeted campaign to turn out latinos look like, um, and what would the effect be if, you know, pete wilson hadn't done us a favor in california a couple decades ago? >> let me -- >> one other thought that i
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forgot that's important that'll move this conversation forward briefly. the other part of this, the narrative of immigration in this election, i think, is really one of the extraordinary achievements of the obama campaign. was to deflect all blame for anything that has happened -- >> yeah. >> -- on immigration and make this an issue in which the republicans were consistently -- >> poor candidate, yeah, yeah. >> forget romney. leave romney out. romney just, you know, they put a giant pile of dodo there, and he stepped in it. but they put it there in a remarkable way. [laughter] >> what an image. >> one key statistic in all this. since the day barack obama was inaugurated, one out of every ten mexicans living in the united states has been deported. >> yeah. >> one out of ten. nobody mentioned that. >> yeah, okay. except alfonso in the his town
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hall. [laughter] town hall in las vegas. >> under me you're going to self-deport. well, the answer was under you they're being deported. >> just quickly -- >> okay. >> republican congress who has the funds to do that has a lot -- >> talk about this, talk about this long-term thing. >> yes. >> how, i mean, in your view how long is this, are we scars forever, you know? can we get other this? >> this goes to roberto's point. republicans have a huge brand problem right now among latinos, and it's s.b. 1070, it's, you know, sensen brenner, right in and a lot of it stems from, from the immigration issue and how it's been handled by the two parties. um, i think that -- but, and this is somewhat dangerous with the word immigration lurks behind me to say -- i think there's an immigration-related lesson, there's a danger of overlearning the immigration-related lesson for
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both parties. um, i think republicans are fooling themselves if they think they fully solved their latino problem by now coming to the table on comprehensive immigration reform, and i think democrats are fooling ourselves if we think we've locked this up. >> yeah. >> you know, president gets this done, and we've locked this up for time immemorial. that the result, what we saw in '12, um, obviously had an immigration overlay, had a republican branding problem, but it also was the result of very deliberate, um, incorporation of latinos into the governing coalition, into, and into the kind of daily life of the obama administration, right? and it's little things. it's inviting the anchors of univision and telemundo to the pre-state of the union lunch that before it was just the mainstream media that got invited. it's the, you know, speaking spanish from the, from the white
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house podium for the first time ever during a white house, regularly-scheduled white house press briefing. it's -- there's a, and a lot of this, you know, built into respect, right? >> respect. >> the issues matter tremendously. >> respect. >> respect is a partner, has to go with the issues. >> yeah. >> and i think it's that combination, and, again, 60% support for the affordable care act. a middle class mentality within latinos who appreciate what the president has done and that the president's priority was on the middle class, and his opponent's was elsewhere. so that kind of combination, i think, is what worked and what will continue to work with, you know, democrats make a big mistake if we go, ah, we've locked this up, this is ours. all we have to do to really nail it down is comprehensive immigration. >> and that wouldn't be good for latinos either. the last thing they want to be is african-american, taken for granted and ignored by the other, right? that's the last thing. >> i don't think you can get away with that -- >> because of the size. >> well --
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>> right. well, let's -- >> let me say two things very quickly. >> the ignoring part of it -- [inaudible conversations] >> the african-americans kind of scored some points there with the -- [inaudible] [laughter] >> going back quickly to the deportation issue, when we ran that ad in nevada, it was just nevada. i had never seen the obama campaign reacting so quickly. i mean, they issued several statements. that ad which, again, was just run in clark county, nevada, got coverage from cnn, from all the major media outlets. at that time i said, we're on to something. hopefully, the republican party, the conservative super pac will get it. it didn't happen. >> but what's your prediction of, you know, how can we get over this? >> well, absolutely. the great thing about latinos is they're very independent-minded. i don't know if you can really poll this, but they are. and this is a community in flux. and that's what we have to
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understand, that, again, i think that if we engage them, they'll respond favorably to the conservative message. barack obama wasn't the first one. again, this idea that he was the first one to invite jorge and jose diaz-balart to the white house, you know, i was in the bush administration. i remember president bush being extremely good with spanish-language media. i mean, we -- president bush in the campaign in 2000-2004 was extraordinary in terms of the latino media. can latinos forget? absolutely. i mean, you mentioned pete wilson debacle in california. well, only a few years later, george w. bush was winning with 40-44% of the latino vote, 2004. only eight years ago. >> not in california. >> not in california. >> not california, that's right. not california. >> he blew. >> not california. not california, not new york, that's right. but we were extremely
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competitive. i don't think latinos have forgotten about that. i think latinos understand that ronald reagan was the last one to pass immigration reform. they understand that george w. bush worked very hard for immigration reform, and i think what we allow ourselves is for a small group within the gop to hijack this issue and become the vocal voice on immigration. the problem with republicans is the majority remained silent. remained silent. can we take over? absolutely. but i don't think latinos are going to keep this in their mind. if they have a republican candidate who's good on immigration, who can make a populace case for why a limited government and a free economy is better for latinos, they will support the republican candidate, no problem. >> so, dan, take us back, also -- >> yes. >> say what you're going to say, but then take us back to your millennial voter question, because i think that's really interesting. i'd like you all to think about that. >> i'll grant you that the bush
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family has got can it right in terms of how to message the latinos, right? you can go to school on ad jeb bush ran in his re-election -- >> it wasn't only the bush family. >> look, george w. bush ran an ad that is inconceivable of a republican candidate running today where the only flag that the candidate waved during the ad was the mexican flag. >> my gosh. >> right. >> in his hand. i mean, again, if you just watched the image, it looked like he was running for president of mexico, not president of the united states. >> well, he's a texan. >> right. it's a different sense -- [inaudible conversations] >> it's a different sensibility. >> confidence. >> right. and, again, i think we as democrats need to be very careful to think this is over with latinos. it's not. um, i think the playing surface is a beneficial one to the democrats right now, and i think there's plenty of worry, but the
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work needs to continue to solidify that. um, this is an electorate that is too diverse, um, there's generational change happening in it, um, you need to stay engaged, you need to, you know, those 800,000 to a million hispanics who are aging into the electorate need to be reached out to, need to be cultivated, need to be worked, you know, quite frankly by both parties. i'm hoping the republicans won't. [laughter] as a partisan. and then there is this question, and i don't think the research has been done yet, and roberto can correct me if i'm wrong here n terms of this millennial kind of question. >> yeah. >> the latino electorate is young and getting younger, and the question is how are they going to behave like millennials? quite frankly, are my help y'alls going to behave like millennials as time movers forward -- >> when they're not millennials? >> right.
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>> when millennials are 30 or so. >> right. again, so you can overlearn the lessons at any given moment politically quite easily. but, again, the latino millennials or these latinos who are coming of of age, aging into the electorate in places like texas is one experience, and they're likely to have one set of kind of values and voting behavior, and when they're aging into the electorate in south florida, it's a different -- so, again, we've got to be very careful to overthink this and oversimplify this as we do the analysis. >> you know -- [inaudible conversations] things like spanish-language media and issues, can't we? i mean, isn't it -- >> well, let's just talk about this part of it first. >> right. >> there's -- it's not, you don't need to overthink it. there's actually, there is a very good political analyst who's not much in favor in many
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circles these past few weeks for his predictive skills. [laughter] and for his actual arithmetic skills on camera. >> right. >> karl rove -- >> yeah. >> -- worked these numbers in 1992-'93. he was, i mean, i remember hearing him talk about this stuff in texas, um, in the 1980s. i mean, the people were talking about who were going to make -- who were already born then, right? >> right. >> so the demographics haven't changed. he laid, i mean, his numerology argued that republicans to be competitive in the demography of this decade, um, had consistently reached between 40, 45, sometimes high 40s of latino vote nationally. doesn't have to win it. >> right. >> and you're not talking about a huge, dramatic shift that
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where latino voters are -- and this is making a series of assumptions, right? and there are a number of assumptions that you, that then peel away from those numbers. i mean, one of them is, um, what was not anticipated, and there's a really important factor in all this, is the recession and its effect on population trends. so people have stopped moving, right? we have very low rates of internal migration which was one of the factors that was transforming the politics of places like virginia, north carolina, the metropolitan texas -- >> right. >> -- houston, dallas had been converted politically by people coming from elsewhere. the inner mountain west. so if you halt that, you know, and when you're thinking about latinos as part of a coalition, the key element of that coalition was this mixture of
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newcomers. latino newcomers and newcomers from other places. particularly if you think to the future of some place like north carolina or georgia, even at congressional district level. so if you halt that, that's one thing. the other question is what -- >> or halt it permanently. >> well, no. we're into a five-year lag. so when does it pick up, how long does it take to get back to the levels of migration that created this political environment which was created 10, 15 years ago? and, you know, by the time this latino electorate gets to voting age, you know, will they start voting early, always a question. >> right. >> right. >> and it varies from one cycle to another. very hard to tell. >> right. >> very difficult to understand what mobilizes people when they're young. >> well, will they be educated enough? because that will change their voting patterns, right? like how -- >> well, then the question is
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who are they? >> yeah. >> who -- what are their values? where do they fit? do they vote at la tee knows -- latinos? do they vote as people who didn't go to college, who had a very hard time going to college? do they vote economic interests? and we have a good idea of what those economic interests are likely to be -- >> low income. >> low income working class, many of them. >> yeah. >> their parents don't have the money to easily send them to college. >> yeah. >> the public education system's doing terribly with them. college-going rates are up, but they're not going to four-year degrees. >> yeah. >> so there are a lot of reasons to assume that what the economic shape of this, and if you take the idea that they're coming, they're going to come into politics as coalition players -- >> right. >> -- then is, you change the nature of identity politics then somewhat, you know? >> okay. >> you're looking at a different kind of coalition --
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>> right. >> -- that's not based on his pan usty necessarily -- >> right. [inaudible conversations] >> i think we're agreeing. like, the point here is, um, it behooves, building off the very last thing you said, it behooves whomever want withs them to be a part of d wants them to be a part of, you know, their electoral, to keep them engaged in the coalition. right? and not to think this one issue has kind of permanently made them a member of the coalition. >> absolutely. >> and this is, and this is the key for republicans, and i agree that we can't overthink it. i mean, what are the projections, what are going to be their interests, it's hard to say right now. but one thing is clear, republicans cannot engage latinos two months before a general election. >> yeah. >> i was in tampa, and i was talking to one of the cochairs of the romney hispanic effort, and i was complaining that i hadn't seen anything going on in
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battle growpped states where latino vote is decisive. and he looked in my eyes and said, alfonso, now is when the campaign starts. i'm like, oh, my god. [laughter] we're gonna lose big. and we did. but it can be either six months before the election, it has to be a continuous effort. >> right. >> to engage latinos continuously. and again, as i said, to explain to them why policies based on limited government and free economy are good policies for latino businesses. latinos opening businesses three times as fast as the national average. i don't think they have, they understood the impact that, say, obamacare's going to have in their businesses, but they soon will. and if we don't engage them, if we don't explain that to them, they're not going to understand. so this is key. and then finally, if you're -- obviously, i go back to the issue of immigration. i mean, you need to have -- those who have remained silent for so long at this point have to raise their voices.
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the great thing is that now there's an avalanche of republicans coming forward and saying i'm for immigration reform from rick santorum, the latest, to sean hannity who says he's evolved and now he's for immigration reform. well, you're going to see a lot of people who remain quiet on the issue coming forward and saying, you know what? i'm actually going to tackle this issue. i'm conservative, and i believe in immigration. and finally conversations are starting in the house and senate. so i am hopeful, i am hopeful. but, again, if we have a good position on immigration, if we don't engage the latino vote directly, understanding its diversity -- for so long hispanic outreach from the republicans' side has been talking to hispanic business elites. i remember one event that a hispanic organization did, and i mean, i love this organization, they do great work, but they did it at the dooral resort in miami -- dural resort in miami. >> we were both there, yeah.
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>> and i just didn't really get it. there were really more latino voters in the kitchen than out -- >> ouch. >> and, i mean, but it says something. >> yeah. >> it says something about where are we engaging them. i think we have to go to the commitments. the basic community organizations that are conservative are at evangelical churches. let's use them, let's go to the grassroots. but that hasn't happened. >> right. okay. so let's open it to audience questions. um, somebody's got a microphone. let's start on the ledge there. [laughter] anybody sitting on the ledge deserves to get the -- [laughter] >> hopefully only literally, not figuratively. >> please identify yourself. >> sure, thanks very much, cindy from the latin american program here. you mentioned the record rate of deportations under barack obama. i'm wondering if you can sort of, all of you, look ahead into your crystal ball. we all know if there is immigration reform, it's going to involve, you know, a compromise between things that, you know, democrats want and
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that republicans want. what do you think are the elements of a potential immigration reform that will most turn off latino voters in terms of trading off, you know, some form of, you know, legalization of people already in the country in exchange for, you know, tougher enforcement, a bigger wall, all that sort of -- where do you, where do you see the politics of this kind of driving wedges into the -- >> right. >> well, frankly, i think if we do legalization, if we do path to citizenship, the other stuff will not be that significant in the latino community. >> correct. >> i agree. if it's legalization that provides them at least some form of legal residency, i don't think it will be an issue. tougher enforcement's not going to be an issue to latinos. question here is the path to citizenship. i can already see the democrats saying, well, republicans are against a path to citizenship. i think republicans would have to say we're against a special path to citizenship. ideally, i would like to see a path to citizenship, especially
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for the young dreamers. but i think i agree with tamar. legalization has to be part of this. >> dan? >> i'm curious as to what tamar meant by legalization. >> that piece is much more important than the rest. >> yes. >> that's the turkey in the middle -- [inaudible conversations] >> a path to citizenship is the turkey on the table. i think, again -- >> probably the wrong metaphor. >> right. if there's a path to citizenship with a reasonable amount of time, and i'm not quite sure what reasonable is right now, um, then i think the rest of it falls into place quite simply from a kind of latino activism perspective. the -- i think, quite frankly, that's going to be as i think you've just heard in these two answers -- [laughter] where there's still a lot, still a lot of bridging to be done, um, in washington and, i think,
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within the republican party in terms of how far they're willing to go on the question of path to citizenship. not just second class status here in the united states. um, that, i think, will be the real rub in the debate. >> yeah. i have to respectfully disagree. it -- >> why we invite you. [laughter] >> the only reason. >> just to disagree. >> if you look, if you think back over the last ten years or so, um, of failure on immigration policy -- actually more than 10 years, 15 years, 20 years, depends how long you want to go. [laughter] it starts making me feel old. one of the developments particularly since the mid 2000s, um, has been the emergence of a fairly vigorous immigrants' rights movement in this country and a litigation power and a protest power that
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didn't exist before. you all talk -- all of you have talked here as if, you know, you missed the key the to the all immigration legislation in the past, maybe it'll be different this time, is the details. this means nothing. there are two things that i think we know from past experience about the nature of these proposals. um, one is that legalization proposal is going to be a giant game of chutes and ladders, right? all kinds of qualifications, a process for getting into it, um, they're going to be right to the last minute bargaining over let's set the start date here or here. and you're tossing a million people one way or the other depending on a deal that's made, you know, in one of those gilded
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roomed in the capitol building when it coat goes to conference, right? -- when it goes to conference, right? so we know that. the process of legalization itself given the current framework is designed to be long. >> right. >> so it is going to be litigated and processed. people are going to be going through for a long time. >> right. >> the other thing, it'll be full of potholes, full of questions about implementation ability, rights to counsel. i mean, we're talking about taking a framework now legally that is intensely hostile to the legal rights of the foreign-born. a democratic -- >> right, right. >> by the way -- >> but let me continue. >> we have five minutes. >> all right. in one last point. [laughter] the other piece of the architecture of immigration policy that we, that i think that we can be pretty confident about is that as you build an umbrella under which certain people are sheltered, life outside that umbrella gets harsher. >> okay. >> right? no question. >> okay.
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>> so outside that means whoever doesn't get in -- >> right. >> -- is going to face a much more wicked situation in terms of much higher rates of deportation, fewer rights when -- >> but presumably, they're going to blame both parties, right? presumably. you know, in the ideal world where we make a deal -- >> i'm just saying, but this is -- people are portraying this as, oh, by april we'll pass this law, and then latinos will forget about it. >> right. >> it will be a living, breathing controversy in the latino commitments for the next decade -- communities for the next decade. >> okay. next question. we have lots of questions so, please, make your questions brief, and maybe we'll accumulate a few now. man with the microphone. >> i have a question about, immigration, it seems, has been discussed more as a unilateral issue here. where does mexico have a role here? this is, in many ways, a foreign policy question. the obama administration has little or no real relationship with mexico, at least even the new president, and i do wonder whether this will ultimately
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become a matter of solving this as two nations can rather than just one. >> okay. next question, man right there in the blue shirt. >> miguel diaz, i'm a foreign service -- [inaudible] great panel. my kudos to the wilson center for holding it. i have two questions, if i may. >> no, one. >> one question. i can only speak for myself as a hispanic that voted for obama, but i'm not sure whether i did it because i was scared the bejesus out of the romney campaign or whether i did it for love of what the democrats have done for hispanics. and i guess my question to roberto is, can you quantify these sentiments, the fear of the republican party, versus the love of the democratic agenda, and to what extent -- >> great question. >> -- those inform the way the different campaigns might go after the hispanic vote in the future. >> that's a great question. the woman in front of you in the red shirt. please, identify yourself. >> andrea baron.
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yeah, i'm wondering whether you think the latino position on abortion is more like that of joe biden who said he would not impose his views on the rest of the country or whether they're more similar to paul ryan's who believes that his particular religious views should be imposed on the rest of the country who might not share them? >> tricky. um, the man right here in the white shirt. you guys are going to have to put all this together and fast. >> my name is -- [inaudible] i have a concern that republicans, like, i did vote for barack obama four years ago, in this time not because i think he betrayed most of his promises. and i would like to see his nobel prize withdrawn too. this would be the first recall of a nobel prize. given that, i think that republicans should move, in my opinion, to the left of democrats, which means you've got to get rid of your
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right-wing, fascists you have in the party. and that's the only way to win. and i hope -- >> what's your question? what's your question? >> so my question is will the country move just like we gave george bush two terms even though he had screwed up after the four-of -- four-year? is it that if hillary clinton runs as a democrat, she will get the big hammer for all the failures of the obama administration, and the republicans will by default win? >> the last question. boy, we've got lots of questions still. okay, let's take this around and then see if we have some time left over. try to -- we do only have a few minutes, so this is your, i think, treat this as your -- yeah, treat this as your last word. say what you want to say. [laughter] >> all right. over to you. >> do you want me to start? >> yeah.
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>> well, on the question of dealing with mexico, you know, you can imagine a situation particularly if there's some kind of movement on some kind of legislation here where there are conversations with mexico about security and immigration. and particularly central american migration through mexico which is -- i think there's, it's likely to be increase in traffic is going to come through. there are already signs this year of really substantially-mounting migration that some of those countries are disintegrating. mexico -- the conversations in the new administration there are really great concerns about having, essentially, failed states next to them and looking to the u.s. for help in dealing with them. that could be a way of, um, right now there's ground there, and there are, you know, at the
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government, ministerial level there's thought being put into how you approach that. there are think tanks working on it. we'll see if that agenda develops. the fear/love question with latinos, you know, there's -- you have to -- this vote has to be disaggregated, and a big chunk of it has to be set off to one side. i'd say 50% of it, maybe 55% of it that's just not going to be in play. ..
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they're not going to change. let you and democrats and coastal california, it's really hard to see where you get republicans can hope to get more than 25 or 30% out of that, in the rio grande valley, and texas. i mean, in chicago and its suburbs. it starts to add a. i think in cuba, a new dynamic has said and. i think obama opening of travel to cuba has totally changed the game for the way humans think about it. so you talk about large chunks of this electorate that are solidly democratic. and there's a solid base, so they gain has been and will continue to be about a fairly small margin of this electorate in key places. >> i'll duties as quickly as again.
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i'm still enjoying what happened in november of 2012, think about november 2016. a two word answer to your question, joe biden. and which is a segue over to your question. i will say the premise of your question terms of the obama administration not having a relationship with mexico and why firing, before my summer vacation i was the main latin advisor policy for three years. this is kind of an anecdote, but 34 countries that i was responsible for, i visited no country more than, more than -- other than 13 times. i visited one country 17 times for three and half years i was in the white house. that country happens to be mexico. the intensity of the relationship between the two governments, prior government and now you are seeing with -- vice president biden going to the inaugural, and this vice president doesn't go to a lot of
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inaugurations. something you should read into that. it is in intensive relationship between the government, between the governments of the systems across a broad range of issues, media focuses on security questions but it goes a lot further than that. so i think you will see that continuing to emigration is a complicated question to do with and the bilateral context that i think president fox of mexico learned a political lesson in mexico of staking too much on effecting the immigration debate in the united states. over something that he really couldn't affect. and paid a political price at home for failure to deliver something that was never in his power to do, which was comprehensive immigration reform in the united states. i think pena nieto has learned that question and i don't think you will see him, i don't think you'll see them being particularly asserted of what should happen in the legal construct in the united states. i think you're exactly right. the question of transmigration, the prior mexican government and this mexican government very
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concerned. and they are looking at the problem in a very different way than they traditionally have. what comes of that, how you wrestle with it, that's not clear. i think that we part of the conversation between the two governments, central america i know is a part of the conversation, has been for some years between the two governments and will continue to be. so i think there is a very intense relationship between the government of the trent and the government of mexico across a broad range of issues. on the particulars of what a deal in the u.s. looks like i don't think you'll see a whole lot of public and i think even private interaction. spun back to you what is a quick last word? >> i think it's really hard to to circulate what happened in that. there was clearly concerned, can going back to the brand problem that republicans have, of what the republican victory would
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mean for latino voters. but there was also i think a growing recognition among latinos that they were part of a coalition, that they were wanted. and they were included and they really were part of a going forward vision. which one and where factored more, hard to say. but i think therein lies the lesson of this election from a political standpoint. the inclusion in a very real way, and i think it's a two-way street action. organized political latinos also have to think about what they do now. do they do their own thing? or do they incorporate themselves in multiple places into the coalition, here in washington and across the country? and i think that will have a lot to say about the shape of latino politics moving forward, whether it really takes on this coalition nature or whether it still this other that has, you
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know, a variable relationship, and may very well be that there are different answers to that at different levels. >> very quickly, i agree with the issue of mexico. sadly, in 2000 when we began, before 9/11 that we are going to move immediately on immigration reform, the relationship with president fox was extraordinary, very, very close. after 9/11, it took a hit because of mexico's position on a number of issues, including the effort in iraq. however, i think the relationship with mexico continues to be very intense. i don't think, i think most experts would agree that relationship with mexico has weakened dramatically. i think that, well, perhaps dan would -- [inaudible] >> but i just don't see the same
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type of rapport or relationship with mexico that we had under the bush administration. i mean, how the "fast and furious" things handle. it was pressing calderón himself to criticize the u.s. for that whole botched effort. on abortion i would say that poll after poll, every single study that i've seen with exception of the exit polling shows that the majority, the majority of latinos believe in -- that abortion should be legal compared to the 40% of the rest of the population gets i think they would agree with mr. ryan. i was just in a position of the catholic church in the christian churches which means the churches have a lot of influence in the latino vote. and then finally, on the latino vote, look, it's really hard to see. again, we are not a monolithic community, and i think as dan has said, and roberto, both parties can but if the republican party has to do a
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major effort overhaul of its efforts towards latinos and again and. they cannot wait until election. has to be an ongoing effort. are going after not only about immigration but every single, explaining why conservative politics are good for latinos. i don't believe that any and like governor romney said, that latinos voted for president obama because of gifts. i also don't think he was because obamacare or anything else. i think it had i think it had to do a lot with immigration and the lack of inclusion in efforts towards hispanics. >> great. so thank you very much. thank you. i apologize for those of you who didn't get to ask a question. i think the speakers will be around for a few minutes. you know, i love the fear and love question. i think it gets to a lot of coming in, politics is about issues. in a way we parse it out so well. politics are about issues. politics are about outreach and the machine to politics in this case is about this one big issue that we've got to get off the
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table. but really what this is about, the future now that dynamic is is and how both parties, particularly republicans am afraid, have a lot of work to do. so thank you all so much for being a. thank you for terrific panelists, and all five terrific panelists. [applause] [inaudible conversations] >> and room clearing out here, talking about the latino vote. you can watch this conversation if you missed any of it online. we have it up at the c-span video library.
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and let's take a look now at what's going to be happening in congress this week. the house will be back in tomorrow at 2:00. they will be appointing conferees to work on agreement to work with us in the defense department programs. live coverage of the house you can find over on c-span. here on c-span2 the senate returns at tpm for general speeches today. at 5:00 they will be taking up an extension of fcic insurance used mainly by companies and local government. it's the transaction guarantee program. they will take a boat to move forward on that bill scheduled at 5:30 p.m. of course, live coverage of the senate he on c-span2. later today, live coverage. president obama stopped in michigan. he will be talking about the economy and extending tax cuts.
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>> and again, of course live coverage of the senate later today. they will become at 2:00. we will hear from president obama will be making a stop in michigan. he's going to talk about the economy and extended tax cuts. he's been working on a deal with john boehner. they met yesterday to discuss
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the fiscal cliff. the president will visit a diameter eco-plant in redford. and as "the detroit news" reports, the company plans to announce $109 investment in that plan for new technology and expanding their production. you can watch the president's remarks live at about 2:00 eastern over on our companion network, c-span. >> friday, former reagan officials reflected on the 1987 negotiations on a nuclear missile treaty with the soviet union. the intermediate nuclear forces treaty, or inf, led to the destruction of thousands of europe-based nuclear missiles on both sides. speakers here will include former assistant secretary of state richard burt, former u.s. ambassador to the soviet union, jack matlock, and will also there from former assistant secretary of state rozanne ridgway. the american foreign service association posted this hour and 20 minute event.
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>> i would like to wish all other good morning. one. i'm susan johnson, the president and i would like to extend a very warm welcome to you all. and thank you for coming to this important and special panel discussion. and also celebration of the 25th anniversary of the signing of the historic treaty. special thanks of course go to our panelists and our moderator, ambassadors matlock, ridgeway and bert, for sharing their experiences and reflections surrounded the complex negotiations that led to this treaty which was a significant factor in reducing dangers of the cold war. i'm sure you know all of these three imminent folks but i would just like to say a quick word. about the ridge was assistant sec of state for europe and canada from 1985-89. and in her 32 year foreign
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service career she served as ambassador to finland, ambassador to former democratic republic, ambassador for oceans and fisheries affairs, and as counselor of department. we are delighted to have her back to talk to us, or with us today. ambassador burt is currently now the managing director at associates, where he led the firm's work in europe and eurasia since 2007. but prior to this, ambassador burt was the u.s. ambassador to the federal republic of germany from 85-89. and before that worked in the state department assistant secretary of state for european and canadian affairs from 1983-85. and before that was the direct of political military affairs in the department of state. so he, along with his colleagues, has a long and imminent involvement in these issues. and, finally, last but not
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least, ambassador matlock known to many of us, career ambassador. he's been holding a series of academic posted i'm not going to list them all, since 1991. but during his 35 years in the american foreign service, 1956-91, he served as ambassador to the soviet union from 1987-1991. as special assistant to the president for national security affairs, and senior director for european and soviet affairs on the national security staff from 83-86. and as ambassador to czechoslovakia from 81-83. and i will not go over the rest of his eminent and long career in the interest of time. but i just did want to give you a brief recap of all three of them. and, of course, marvin kalb, who is the edward r. murrow professor emeritus at harvard kennedy school of government. and a contributing news analyst
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for npr and fox news channel. antaeus wrigley called upon to comment on major issues of the day by many other leading news organizations. and also he is very dear to our heart here at aspen because he is legally serve as moderator, and done a superb job each time. very happy to have you back, martin. thank you so much. let me just go back and say just a word about the in depth knowledge, skill, dedication and perseverance of each of you present today who worked on the negotiating team for the process that led up to it. really did not just bring this to fruition but also reflect the practice of diplomacy at its best. it required outstanding diplomacy and -- to balance the risks and demands of peace in the sort of opec security environment of the cold war period, which perhaps, perhaps
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most people to remember but perhaps some do not. so, before turning the program over to marvin though, i would just like to mention, we have a new book that's very pertinent to the subject, the reagan-gorbachev arms control breakthrough, edited by david t. jones, and dedicated to ambassador, the late ambassador maynard whitman, who was the principal inf treaty negotiator and leader of or inf delegation. and copies of this book are available at the baca the room for those of you who would like to purchase one afterwards. so without further a due it's my pleasure, to wish all happy holidays and to turn the program over to marvin. marvin? >> thank you very much, this. it's always a pleasure for me to be asked to come here to moderate a panel. my life has been absolved with the foreign service for an awful long time. though i only work in the
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foreign service for a year and a half. 1956-seven and moscow. but since that time all of you in different ways. but as a look at i see familiar faces, but i see a lot of gray hair. and that also suggests to me that most of the people in this room remember that there was a cold war, and that there was soviet union. and in 1997, the relatively new leader of the soviet union, gorbachev, signed an agreement with president reagan that we are in effect celebrating today. the 25th anniversary of the inf treaty. and i learned this morning that it has a much longer name. the tree between the u.s.a. and the ussr on the elimination of their intermediate range and shorter range missiles. and that word elimination has an awful lot of clout.
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because up until that point we were talking about reducing or limiting the developmedevelopme nt of nuclear weapons. and it also strikes me that we were in another era. we were in the cold war. that was obvious to us all. but at the time not quite so obvious, we were beginning to see signs of the end of the cold war. we didn't quite recognize it at that time, but for me personally, we remember clearly the internet early 1980s there was a sudden eruption of antiwar and antinuclear demonstrations all over western europe. the russians had moved as as 20 medium-range missiles into eastern europe. they were regarded as a threat. and suddenly everybody was very concerned about the possibility of war. and i became aware of that in a
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dramatic way when my boss called me up to new york and said hey, what the heck is going on in europe? what's going on in europe? how serious is this? are we really at the beginning of what might become a war? i said i haven't a clue, but if you want to see me there, i would be glad to go. and so i went over there, floating around in that part of the world between february -- i thought myself, it was quite extraordinary, in germany especially. i would like to ask perhaps i could start with richard burt and ask him to answer a simple question as he lay the groundwork year. were we really dealing with a serious strategic threat from the soviet union?
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>> well, that's a great, that's a great question. i think if you look at the deployments that you just talking about, of the ss-20, the western military district of the soviet union in a broader context, in terms of a broad modernization and build up of russian nuclear forces, marvin, i think not only viewed as a threat militarily, but it was also viewed in the words we use to use in that time, also viewed as a threat, a political thread in terms of decoupling. the security of the united states from the european allies. this decoupling concept actually originated in europe in the 1970s. and it's interesting and important to go back and look at
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the origin of this whole issue back to really the german government, chancellor schmidt who, in the late '70s started pointing to russian deployment, as potentially threatening the solidarity of the alliance, and the concept that for every piece of real estate in nato, europe as well as canada and the united states, was the same. and that, that we need to be able to protect and to deter russian political pressure militarily force. against any nato ally. and the carter administration, having reversed its decision, famous neutron bomb, really rattled the europeans, but especially helmut schmidt. so you have to really do i think the early steps taken to what
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became the double track decision, deployment of cruise missiles inversion two, and as a reaction to those uncertainties. in that area. now, it's interesting, the reagan administration inherited the nato double track decision. and it wasn't prepared to kind of think through the consequences of that. one big issue we immediately faced, and marvin we have talked about this unprecedented in a political protest going on in europe in the early '80s, it was really i think focus on the belief that the reagan administration wasn't really serious about negotiating a solution. it was only in rebuilding american military power, a concern that led that there could be a conflict in europe. and when the reagan
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administration inherited a double track decision, one of the first issues yet to address was, well, are we going to get into these negotiations to reduce these intermediate range nuclear missiles, so that we don't have to deploy those missiles? and there was a great deal of resistance from the pentagon and the white house and elsewhere about getting him into new arms control negotiations. after all, candidate reagan had run against salty. the carter administration had negotiated a strategic arms treaty that the republicans didn't support. but secretary al qaeda recognized that in order to preserve the option of responding to -- secretary powell paid -- the problem was once al haig finally stimulated in 1981 a discussion with the
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president and the international security council about getting back negotiations and what our position was, cap weinberger was successful in getting the president to adopt the famous zero option, which all of us in the state department said was just not credible to our allies. why wasn't it credible? the russians had come and i can remember, but they have something like two or 300 deployed under to point to each one of the ss '20s had like eight or 900 warheads directed against europe. and our systems were down the road. we were going to begin deployment into 1993. so we asked ourselves how is it we can go to the russians and ask them to dismantle their systems so we don't have to deploy? and sure enough, well, immediately we were proven
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wrong. the peace movement in europe, initially endorsed the idea of zero option. thought it was a great idea. but then it kind of reality sunk in. that we didn't have a very strong negotiating position. and what our job was in the early '80s was to convince the europeans the only way we could get an agreement was to go forward with deployment weapons. and it was hard. ross will talk in a few minutes i think about reagan's own attitude about nuclear weapons. out that was manifested. but i believe it was in a visit in bonn, germany, in 1983, reagan actually saw several hundred thousand germans vigorously fighting the german police in opposition to the deployment of those missiles.
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that he really internalized the sense of opposition, the sense of concern about nuclear weapon. that coupled by the way, some of you will remember a made for television movie around the same period, the day after. again, president reagan launched -- watched this tv show about a town in the midwest that was nuked, in kansas, and the consequences after that nuclear attack. so, so this was our problem. just a couple of quick anecdotes and i will give the floor back to you, but we almost, there were several points will be almost swerved off the road. one of them was, it was the famous walk in the woods by paul. and roz will identify this.
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george shultz as secretary of state -- had been suggested for approximately a month. he came from the state department, ma someone who was well versed in economics in business. he wasn't somebody that paid attention to strategic nuclear balance. and he, i got a call. paul was coming and have lunch, when i come to lunch on the seventh floor. and i went to the lunch, and paul then briefed secretary schultz on his informal chat with a russian ambassador on their proposed arms control. which would have led to lower levels of deployment. not a zero option to lower levels of deployment. but would not have involved
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persian to missile battle. that was absolutely zeroed out. the big problem, when i listen to this is the secret of our success, getting the missiles in. the fact that our ambassador had gone off -- without telling any of them, and giving them a sense of ownership, it was very dangerous to the reason he didn't go off the road was the russians stupidly turned down that deal. they could have stopped deployment in our tracks. finally, just one other quick anecdote. we deploy those bills in the fall of 1983, about a month after a crisis in which the soviets shot down a korean airliner. they were strong calls from the white house for us to walk out
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of the negotiations on inf to punish the russians. had we done that we would not have been able to have the alliance support we needed to get the talk circuit at george shultz successfully fought off those efforts. we did successfully deployed. the russians walked out, and they took the public relations hit, not us. last point i would make very briefly -- >> three last points. >> i know, one last point. one more. that is in 1985 after a year and a half of no progress, that was pre-gorbachev when you had basically a brain dead soviet leadership, george shultz set down with -- sat down with grow
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me to come and that was the breakthrough really that launched the negotiation. nobody at that time foresaw that likelihood of zero option. we already moved off of it. but it was really shultz and the president outlined a new approach to russia, which put arms control, and roz were in the business, and the broader context, human rights discussion and regional security matter, a balanced agenda that really paved the way for the progress. >> rick, thank you very much. you mentioned the brain-dead soviet leadership at that time. we all ought to remind was that nearly 1980s, brezhnev doctrine and on drop off came in, he died. chernenko came in and he died. and to find a 1985 this spring,
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there was al gore which often came in and things radically turned around, -- pick it up at that point. >> by the spring of 1985 i think as rick has touched upon, there were so many conflicting threads of thought and activity taking place at apec to set them aside. but you have to recall there was discussion within u.s. government as to whether to do with the russians at all the miner who was in charge. there was difficulty in europe with peace demonstrations and governments being asked to take on the question of -- paying a political price. i was in east germany at that time, and the picture from there, granted was the most favorable but was nevertheless of the united states which was more determined on a warlike posture.
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there was a great deal that had to be overcome, and i think, it was successfully overcome. in large part because the very talkative termination of george schultz working with president reagan. in 1985, as rick has suggested there was an agreement to go to geneva for someone meeting in geneva. the question was how did you get there? in the summer of 85, through such events as the 10th anniversary of the helsinki final act, and meeting user of the united nations general assembly in new york, the secretary, secretary schultz was able to engage in a relationship with foreign minister, another new phase for the united states. the march towards geneva included a discarding of the old notion of a page along communiqués and issues about which we disagreed in which we patched over which -- with language which was always
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misinterpreted. and the so-called four-part agenda. human rights, arms control, regional issues and bilateral issues. the essence of that, rick has touched on. it meant we did not trade off one u.s. interests were not u.s. interest. how quickly people would say if the soviet union does something we don't like, let's make them pay with the u.s. interest. instead of one of their own interest. we got away from that as a new negotiating approach. we made away gradually to geneva, where we arrived with some sense of things being very, very different in the soviet union. and one of the trips we have met with one member of the been -- who said you know as new leaders when we got to be in charge, the cupboard was bare. i'm not sure a lot of that had registered in washington where we kept getting a different sense of the soviet leadership, as we went to our dialogue i
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became -- it again very difficult as a look at what we're getting from intelligence side and what we are seeing across the table. but in geneva as president reagan met gorbachev for the first time, and the two of them that as leaders in front of the very famous fireplace conversation, later walking along the lake, begin to see the emergence were people were finally accepted, that president reagan's view of the role of nuclear weapons. and his very real distaste. said the key document that emerged from geneva, besides some disagreements, later the key documents, joint statements as that of the very beginning, the two leaders agreed that nuclear war cannot be one that is never thought. they were negotiations going on at the time for new s.t.a.r.t. agreement. there were negotiations going on for inf that begin to take the lead for the outcome of the summit discussions. we were not able easily to get
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to the promised washington summit. we kept running into bilateral issues. a case in which one of our correspondents was picked up in moscow and we had problems with so-called marine corps security breaches in moscow. we have problems of people concerned about the fact that the new u.s. embassy in moscow was, in fact, one grand tuning fork for some intelligence listing. at each became an obstacle to getting to the summit meeting that we're supposed to do. and getting on with the arms control agenda in a way that negotiators in geneva -- [inaudible]. on the road to reykjavík there is a very real and interesting exchange of correspondence between org chart and reagan. in which they begin to trade ideas on how they might proceed on the start side to reduce weapons, and on the ins site. but right in the middle of it to
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reveal soviet distaste and fear of the strategic defense initiative. i think not enough importance can be given to the role of the sdi and both fostering and injuring the dialogue and in the alliance members who were not sure whether this, as with 00 would, in fact, make the negotiations a joke that we, the united states, was ready to negotiate since the. at reykjavík, we arrived, many people said unprepared, country. the united states team arrived with some of the largest volumes of possible positions that, in response to soviet position that he could possibly see. they were totally prepared. the difficulty was again sdi, and jack i know was in to take of one of the opening sessions, but as the two men met again, the relationship having been fostered to the exchange, having fostered by george shultz's reports back to the president
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about his many meetings with gorbachev, it became clear that somehow or another the soviets had to be brought to understand that sdi was not going to be negotiated away. at geneva in one of the side stories, you may have all heard about, the president had said to mr. gorbachev, and we were using simultaneous translation, not done before, a wonderful tool. instead of having to sit through the session as people talked for 30 minutes and then had to sit for 30 minutes of translation, these men were engaged actively across the table. when president reagan said i will share with you the technology of strategic defense initiative your gorbachev said, he won't even share with us milking machine technology. [laughter] and those of us were no takers to stop taking notes. we had never seen an exchange like that. so these two men arrived in
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geneva, in reykjavík i think what the dialogue in place, a style of talking with each other in place, i respect for each other which was i think palpable, and a belief that each could probably deliver on what they were talking about. i think very, very important. as everyone knows, the talk disappeared or broke down on sdi on that last day. but what was there for inf was the agreement that they would be 100 longer-range inf missiles on each side. europe would be free of such missiles. the 100 would be placed in soviet asia and for the united states and look as if our 100 missiles would be placed in alaska. with what kind of target it's hard to say but nevertheless it would be 100-100. and gorbachev set off at that point a round circuit to try to use sdi as the obstacle to further progress, and to some against it except something
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else. meanwhile, we had after reykjavík on the telephone to make sure we got to our facing countries before the press got them, called each of the beijing countries, leadership, whoever was available on a late sunday night in europe to inform them of the outcome of the inf talks of the 100-100 in europe. it was greeted with total shock. people who had fallen in love with arms control finally discovered that they were in love in fact with most of it and where decoupling began to appear on the u.s. side, as rick said, and on the television into united states, leader after leader after leader, general after jenna, former secretary of state after former secretary of state went on television to talk about the dangers the coupling of ministers from europe as result of this inspect the ins decision. it was very clear that the president had in mind what he was doing him a new what he was
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doing, and george shultz, and he worked very closely on this. gorbachev failed in his efforts to save sdi was a reason they could not be more agreement, and called us, approached the united states in the spring of 1987 to say, and has to be a global, nothing else seems to work. and with respect to short-range missiles, which has not been a part of the discussions, we had some, they had some. they would agree on zero. incredible sort of announcement from the soviet side very carefully, produced a zero-zero prospect in the spring of 1987. >> roz, thank you very much. a wonderful presentation. for you in moscow during this? >> which one? >> this very from 85-87? >> no. i was in washington. and in reykjavík and geneva.
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>> working very much on -- >> all the reagan staff. >> and trying to figure what the russians were up to. from your point of view as a russian expert, what was going on in the russian mind as all this was taking place? what was the importance of the emergence of gorbachev asked the leader of the soviet union? >> well, there are a number of very important questions out there. i think we understand in retrospect as usual, much better than we understood it at the time, one of the misperceptions i believe that we had was that the deployment of the ss-20s had been calculated in advance to be a threat to europe, and to decouple the alliance. now, as we look back now, we find that they had not staffed whatsoever. it was largely a amount of
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inertia of the military-industrial complex. they would build them because they could. and the foreign ministry was not even consulted before their decision to deploy the ss-20. we now know that at least there was a minority of opinion in the foreign ministry after the deployment that this was a strategic error. because it would be seen as a threat to western europe, and that it would bring a reaction from the united states. as we look back, one could argue from the soviet point of view that if they had these inf missiles and we had no comparable missiles in europe, this would be a military advantage. however, once the united states stationed inf missiles in europe, suddenly they are better
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off with zero than they are with american missiles in europe. why? because if we'd used them in retaliation to some other, we could hit the soviet union by missiles that did not originate on the american homeland. now, would they then risk virtual annihilation by attacking the u.s.? now. and you see, that was the reverse of what we would have faced if they had used the inf missiles to attack our allies in europe. we would be faced without the inf in europe to using our intercontinental, and in effect committing suicide. so, everything was reversed. and i think what rick has said about the steps were right. we had to deploy in order to show the soviets that their real interest is zero. now, of course in reykjavík we
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are very close to agreeing, and we would have agreed if gorbachev hadn't set conditions, on 100 outside europe. whether we ever wouldn't have deployed 100 alaska, i doubt. we would've had the right to, but the problem from the russian point of view was that gorbachev also wanted to improve relations with china and japan. and with 100 inf missiles directed at him, how was he going to do that? it's really not in their interest to have 100 missiles out of europe. and it was really in their interest. now, we now have access, have for some years, records of the polit bureau discussions. and let me go back to a couple words about president reagan. before he first met gorbachev, he wrote out on a yellow pad
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several pages, without any prompting from anybody, what he wanted to achieve in geneva in his first meeting. this was handed literally to me as we are getting off the plane in geneva, saying this is what the president has on his mind. if he is wrong somewhere, we will have to straighten him out. actually, it was a very, very precise paper. and among other things, he pointed out that our biggest problems, one of these was a lack of trust. that he had to find a way to begin to create trust. we're not going to solve anything else. he also had it, if i don't achieve anything else, i must convince gorbachev that, that we don't want an arms race, if he wants one, he is going to loose. and number three, whatever we achieve, we must not call it victory. because that will simply make
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the further improvement more difficult. now, let's go ask the reykjavík meeting, and february 1987, gorbachev is facing the polit bureau, and is telling them we have got to come to terms. because these missiles are pointed right at our head. missiles at our head. let's go to zero. they want zero. the defense minister said, hey, how about the british and french? a have wanted compensation. and gorbachev in effect said get real, we're not going to have a war with britain and france. what are you talking about? and then he began to berate the defense ministry. he said he had been robbing our
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people, spending so much on defense, you're scaring everybody else. that is giving them an excuse for an arms race. and i'll tell you comrades, if we let them get by with forcing us into an arms race, we are going to lose. exactly what president reagan was trying to do, tactically. and i would say, you know, people at the time, i know some of martin's colleagues wouldn't say well, reagan but didn't pay that much attention to details. his eyes would glaze over. throwaway numbers of missiles of warheads, and true. he didn't look at those things. he concentrate on the basic things. how do i understand this as a fellow? how do i convince him to do something that is actually in his own interest? because his current policies are not.
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so we spent much more time, and i think, talking to reagan about where gorbachev is coming from, what his pressures were. and, of course, one of the things that we needed to do was, in this process, to convince him we are not out to do him in. among other things, reagan said in that same memo that human rights was too important to carry it out entirely as a public policy. he said we're much to up front. if we confront them publicly, no politician can back down. we need to handle this more private. so he began to move off the shouting at each other, condemning each other. not the that stopped totally, but more and more putting it into a dialogue. and reasonable dialogue that included such things as these
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very effective tutorials by secretary of state shultz. in any event, the inf treaty was a victory for both sides by the time we made it, and i think it is a model in looking at these sorts of issues in the future. i would qualify that by saying i think every issue, every country has unique aspects. you can't say simply because something work in one situation, it's going to work in another. however, the idea that you have to get some understanding of a strategic relationship, which is not threatening, in order to solve these problems of arms productions, i think is very true. it was not a matter, as many people seem to think him at just the right formula. such as walk in the woods.
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it was rather a matter of going back to basics. why are we doing this? and wouldn't we both be better off if we would do something else? that's what we finally got across with inf, and subsequently on a lot of other subjects. >> thank you very much. marvelous insights into what was going on at that time, building up to the inf treaty. and you have spent, all three of you, a good bit of time talking about two personalities, and we were dealing with, where the analysis often was that the system is what governed the direction of policy. it was not the individual. and yet you have spent a great deal of time talking about reagan and gorbachev. would we've had in inf treaty at the end of the day if there were no gorbachev and no reagan? spent i think not.
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>> well, i think there are actually, going to go back, i think there were three -- reagan, gorbachev. it was also the allies. that was a really critical aspect. without somebody who was prepared, and here i agree with jack, without demonstrating credibility in both administration but also as the alliance as a whole, you couldn't have gotten a treaty, in my judgment. and i think we underestimate the political theme the russians experienced of deployment are they saw this as an opportunity. they threatened in the early
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'80s, jack, you will remember this, an ice age if nader went for deployment. and so i think the fact, you know, that you had credibility of deployment, also yet this sneaky guy, gorbachev. i'm not a soviet politician, but when you think about leadership before gorbachev, but also after, some degree, certainly if you look at today's leadership, the direction that president putin is going to he certainly would have been, he wouldn't have been i think willing like gorbachev was to really take the risk. and then finally, a critical point to a know you want to maybe talk about iran, whether there's a case study here, i'm not sure that the u.s. system, even with ronald reagan, would have been willing to engage in this kind of diplomacy, the
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impact of the allies on our system. but they had to take missiles. we had to be unique and sensitive to the politics, their concerns. in a way that we rarely are on foreign policy and national security decisions. >> thanks. you immediately said no to my question. >> i think it took both of them. and rick has mentioned the allies, that's important. i would also mention george schulz and the foreign ministers. neither of them could've done it without that sort of support. but the fact is that you, the united states needed someone with the confidence of our right wing to make a deal with the soviet union, if any of this was going to be made. it was going to be politically defensive it wasn't that there were no democrats that could have thought this was a good
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idea. most of them probably did. and i was there for the democrats that they supported this everywhere as we're going towards the soviet union. but -- >> not so much on deployment. >> well, i remember speak i mean when we got the treats. i'm talking when we got the treaties. and then i would also say in the case of the soviets, none of gorbachev's successors would have been capable of doing what he did to change soviet policy to understand the degree to which the predecessors policies were not in the interest of the soviet union. that took a gorbachev, and it also took the very improbable soviet leader who would risk his own position in order to to try to do what machiavellian said is first a possible. that is, to change the institutions in your country. he ran great risks, and
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ultimately he wasn't successful. but he was successful in most of the things that made a real difference to with. so without the two of them i don't know how this was going to happen. spent roz, do you share that view? >> i do share that view. i happen to believe that those big chapters in history, big men with the courage of an idea, coverage of facing her own political futures on the line. i'm a great believer in the. but marvin, and in this chapter, this is an anniversary. we haven't quite gotten to december yet in our discussion because there was one thing for the leaders to meet and come up with a broad outline but there's another -- for many people in this room today and across washington, today who are observing this anniversary, there's a lot of hard work back in geneva to put an agreement together based on these broad thoughts that were coming out of the discussions with the leaders.
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i have often thought that much of the progress was possible because of the decision was made by the soviet union, totally out of context of this discussion. in stockholm and 85-86 to say that yes they would agree to verifications are on site inspection. which they had never before agreed to, but did in this case in stockholm, in the conference spent why do you think they did it this time? >> i think again, again to measure -- >> gorbachev? >> could have been. could've been their own military. begin to understand that there was a reciprocal to on site inspection. it was not a one way thing, that they would have the opportunity also to look at the western military defense associate. but quickly to the end of all of this, we had an agreement, there are stores along the way that i think, if our colleagues here today that together they would talk until midnight about some of it. but jack mentioned ss-20 because it was the thing to do and
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because they could make it. there was a point when we sat to ask coming of these things do you have? he said i don't know. i'm not in charge. of making them or ordering them. they produce them. they give me the ones i want to i don't know how many they make. so i can't give you that number. i'm going to go back. when we came toward the end, very end, the first part of december, teams are coming in here and getting ready, and even mr. khrushchev, head of the kgb was intended i entertained him at my home one evening with some of the delegation to tell them that human rights could not be forgotten. all the headlights turned to arms control but everyone was gathering. we learned from the soviets they did not have a picture of an ss-20. as many of you remember, the ss-20. so finally they gave us a picture, and it was of a canister. aspect what can we do with a
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picture of a canister? he said the missile is inside. you have to guess. we said that won't do. we need a picture of the ss-20, so the next morning the next overlooking the fifth of december, the sixth of december, the next morning we got a picture of the ss-20. and, finally, an old soviet game that i would sure be left behind in geneva, 1985, when they said at the time we cannot proceed with this joint statement because your negotiators in moscow on the civil aviation agreement are giving us our time. so until you agree on a new civil aviation a great in moscow we won't proceed in geneva. ..


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